Robert Wilson spent 23 years at The Clarion-Ledger/Jackson Daily News as a sportswriter with more than half of those years covering high school sports, mostly in the Metro Jackson area. He helped chose the Dandy Dozen in various sports for more than a decade. Wilson rebirthed a similar team last year with Priority One Bank/Mississippi Scoreboard Metro Jackson Preseason Elite Eleven Girls Basketball Team based on our All-Metro team selections from last season and information from high school and college coaches. This is the second annual team. Wilson selected the best players from Hinds, Madison, and Rankin Counties from their performances last season. The players below are in alphabetical order. The boys team will be published in the upcoming days.
Madison Booker, Germantown, 6-1, Senior Guard
Booker has been a starter on two consecutive gold medal winning USA national teams and rated the No. 3 player in the country in the Class of 2023 by Blue Star Basketball.
Booker announced last month that she was committing to Texas, coached by former Mississippi State and National Coach of the Year Vic Schaefer. She chose Texas over Duke and Tennessee.
Booker was the PriorityOne Bank/Mississippi Scoreboard Metro Jackson Player of the Year for the past two seasons as a sophomore and junior. She was a member of the Elite 11 as a junior. Booker was the Mississippi Gatorade Player of the Year as a sophomore.
Booker averaged 16.6 points, 7.6 rebounds, 2.3 assists and 2.1 steals and led Germantown to a 24-7 record and a MHSAA Class 6A state tournament semifinal finish last season. She scored a career-high 30 points against Arlington, Tenn., last season.
Booker – whose father, Carlos, was a 6-10 center for Southern Miss in the 1990s – made official visits to Duke, Tennessee, and Texas. Recruited by the best programs in the country, Booker narrowed her college choices down to nine schools – Mississippi State, South Carolina, Tennessee, Connecticut, Duke, Florida State, Louisville, Oregon, and Texas – in September a year ago.
Booker averaged 18.8 points, 7.8 rebounds, 2.7 assists, 1.6 steals and 1.6 blocked shots and led Germantown to a 13-4 record and the MHSAA Class 6A runner-up finish as a sophomore. She was first team on the All-Metro Jackson team as a freshman, sophomore and junior.
“Madison’s 3-point shot has improved since last season,” Germantown coach Jamie Glasgow said. “She has been much more consistent from behind the arc in practice. I expect big things from her this season not only scoring and defending, but also taking an even bigger leadership role. I know she can handle it. I’m excited to watch her and her teammates take the court.”
Germantown opens the season Thursday at Vicksburg.
Katelyn Brinkley, Ridgeland, 6-1, Senior Forward
Brinkley averaged 15 points, 7 rebounds, 2 assists and 2 steals and led Ridgeland to a 15-13 record and second round of the MHSAA Class 5A playoffs last season as a junior. She made second team All-Metro Jackson and was a member of the Elite 11 last season.
“Katelyn has a great work ethic and I have seen her work really hard this off season,” said first-year Ridgeland coach Erica Stringfellow Smith, who was at Provine for 10 years before coming to Ridgeland. “She has a big presence on both ends of the floor. Katelyn is a very versatile player who can finish in the paint and can shoot at the perimeter, mid-range at 3-point line. She can score at will. Katelyn gets back in transition and gets it done on both ends of the floor. I am excited about coaching her this year. She will give us a lot of momentum and I look forward to seeing what she will do this season.”
Brinkley has offers from Jackson State, Louisiana-Monroe, Copiah-Lincoln Community College, and Jones County CC.
Ridgeland opens the season against Murrah at 12:30 p.m. in the Ranger Round-Up Classic at Raymond.
Kynnedi Davis, Brandon, 5-6, Senior Guard
Davis averaged 16.2 points, 4.0 rebounds, 2.2 steals and 1.8 assists and led Brandon to a 17-10 record and reached the first round of the MHSAA Class 6A playoffs last season as a junior. She made second team All-Metro Jackson for the second consecutive time last year.
Davis scored a career-high and school record 44 points, including 11 3-pointers (tying for second most for Mississippi history), against Hancock last season.
“Kynnedi is a special player and special person,” Brandon coach Candace Foster said. “She’s a program changer for us with her leadership, character and work ethic. Kynnedi is one of those kids every coach would want on their team and the recognition she has received and will receive this season is just a testament to the work she has put in since she was a kid. Her ability to score in various ways will continue to draw attention to her, especially from the teams we will play this season.”
Central Arkansas, Texas A&M Commerce, Southeastern Missouri, Coahoma CC, Copiah-Lincoln CC, East Central CC, East Mississippi CC, Meridian CC, Pearl River Community College, Shelton State (Ala.) CC, Pensacola (Fla.) State CC have shown the most interest.
Davis averaged 16 points, 5.2 assists and 4.5 steals as a sophomore and helped Pearl to a 12-7 record and the first round of the MHSAA Class 6A playoffs. She made third team All-Metro Jackson as a freshman.
Brandon opens the season against Germantown Saturday at 2:30 p.m. in the Holmes County Classic at Holmes Community College in Goodman.
Taelar Felton, Clinton, 5-2, Junior Guard
Felton averaged 12.4 points, 3.0 rebounds, 2.7 steals and 2.6 assists and helped Clinton to a 21-8 record and the MHSAA Class 6A state tournament semifinal finish last season as a sophomore. She made third team All-Metro Jackson last season.
Felton scored a career-high 36 points (8 of 12 from the field, including 4 of 7 from 3-point range and 16 of 21 from the free throw line) against Tupelo last season. She has career highs of 8 assists, 7 steals and 7 rebounds.
Felton has offers from Jackson State, Jones County CC and Mississippi Gulf Coast CC.
“Taelar is a talented point guard who is quick, has great court vision, can shoot the ball very well from beyond the arc and drops dimes to her teammates,” Clinton coach Pearlenne Fairley said. “Defensively, she creates a lot of havoc that leads to turnovers and she’s not afraid to get inside to rebound. Taelar also gets it done off the court and is a scholar athlete.”
Clinton opens the season against Canton at 4 p.m. in the Holmes County Classic at Holmes CC in Goodman.
Riley Hancock, Madison-Ridgeland Academy, 6-0, Senior Forward
Hancock averaged 13 points, 8 rebounds and 2 blocked shots and led MRA to a 30-6 record and a MAIS Class 6A state tournament semifinal finish last season as a junior. She made third team All-Metro Jackson last season.
Hancock scored a career-high 34 points against MHSAA Class 6A Starkville High last season.
“Riley has worked as hard this off season as any player I have had in my 27 years of coaching,” MRA coach Stephen Force said. “She’s worked on her outside shooting and really improved her ballhandling. Riley’s aggressiveness and her confidence in her ability to score has increased. Work ethic is what allows good players to become great and there’s no doubt she has recognized that.”
Hancock has offers from Mississippi College and Holmes Community College. Her dad, Roger Hancock, played defensive back at Ole Miss.
MRA opens the season against Copiah Monday at 7:30 p.m. in Madison Madness tournament at MRA.
Cayla Myers, Velma Jackson, 5-10, Senior Guard
Myers averaged 18 points and 8 rebounds and led Velma Jackson to a 19-10 record and the MHSAA Class 2A state tournament quarterfinals last season as a junior.
She scored a career-high 29 points in an overtime victory over North Forrest in the second round of the 2A state playoffs last season.
“Cayla has worked hard this off season,” Velma Jackson coach Sharlaundria Winston said. “This summer was the first time playing AAU and she strived in that environment. I am looking forward to her showing that she is more than a scorer this season. Cayla is a consistent scorer, rebounder, and a good passer. She has developed defensively, which was one of the areas of improvement that she needed to develop in order to be an all-around player.”
Myers has an offer from Coahoma CC.
Velma Jackson opens the season against Holmes County Central Saturday at 11:30 a.m. in the Holmes County Classic at Holmes CC in Goodman.
Andeya Robinson, Northwest Rankin, 6-2, Senior Forward
Robinson averaged 13 points and 5 rebounds and helped Northwest Rankin to a 14-14 record and the second round of the MHSAA Class 6A playoffs last season as a junior.
“Andeya is versatile and can handle the ball on the break after securing a rebound,” Northwest Rankin coach Jalessa Taylor said. “She can shoot the mid-range jumper and can be developed to expand to the 3-point range. Andeya has great hands and can run the floor. She finishes well around the rim, has a soft touch and was our leading rebounder last season. Andeya’s best basketball is ahead of her.”
Robinson has an offer from Hinds CC.
Northwest Rankin opens the season against Meridian Thursday at Meridian.
Alana Rouser, Germantown, 6-0, Junior Forward
Rouser averaged 10.2 points and 10.1 rebounds last season and helped Germantown to a 24-7 record and a MHSAA Class 6A state tournament semifinal finish last season as a sophomore. She made first team All-Metro Jackson and a member of the Elite 11 last season.
Rouser had a career-high 21 points against defending MSHAA Class 5A state champion Neshoba Central and a career-high 22 rebounds against Brandon last season.
Rouser has Division I offers from Southern Miss, Alcorn State, Jackson State, Mississippi Valley, Florida International and Louisiana-Monroe.
“Alana has worked really hard this offseason improving every aspect of her game,” Germantown coach Jamie Glasgow said. “Her ball handling and mid-range shot has improved the most. She is going to be a match up nightmare this season. I can’t wait to watch her hard work pay off this season.”
Germantown opens the season Thursday at Vicksburg.
Leah Sutton, Raymond, 5-6, Senior Guard
Sutton averaged 16.8 points, 7.7 rebounds, 3.8 steals and 3.6 assists and led Raymond to a 29-3 record and a MHSAA Class 4A state tournament second-round finish last season as a junior. She made third team All-Metro Jackson and was a member of the Elite 11 last season.
Sutton had career highs of 28 points and 11 rebounds against Jim Hill last season.
“Leah is such a dominant player on the court,” Raymond coach Candace Roberts said. “She is a floor general. It has been such a privilege, watching her grow and seeing her achievements over the years.”
Sutton has offers from William Carey, Copiah-Lincoln CC, Hinds CC, and Mississippi Delta CC.
Raymond opens the season against MAIS Class 5A Central Hinds Academy Saturday at 2 p.m. in the Ranger Round-Up Classic at Raymond.
Kaitlyn Walker, Clinton, 5-9, Senior Forward
Walker averaged 11.9 points and 7 rebounds and led Clinton to a 21-8 record and the MHSAA Class 6A state tournament semifinal finish last season as a junior. She made second team All-Metro Jackson and was a member of the Elite 11 last season.
Walker has career highs of 22 points and 15 rebounds.
“Kaitlyn is an all-around player,” Clinton coach Pearlene Fairley said. “Offensively, she can shoot the jumper, the 3-pointer and get downhill to the basket. Deensively, Kaitlyn rebounds well and doesn’t mind sacrificing her body to take charges. Not only can she get it done on the court, but Kaitlyn is also a scholar athlete.”
Walker has an offer from Hinds CC.
Clinton opens the season against Canton Saturday at 4 p.m. in the Holmes County Classic at Holmes CC in Goodman.
Ma’Nia Womack, Hartfield Academy, 5-11, Senior Guard
Womack averaged 10 points, 7.5 rebounds, 3.2 assists and 2 steals and led Hartfield to a 28-7 record, a MAIS Class 6A state tournament runner-up finish and Overall Tournament semifinal finish last season as a junior.
She made third team All-Metro Jackson last season. Womack has committed to Ole Miss in softball.
“Softball is her top sport, but she is a really good basketball player, too,” said first-year Hartfield coach Mark Alexander, who came to Hartfield after eight seasons as a boys and girls assistant at MRA. “Her athleticism and overall skill set make her a really tough matchup. She’s highly competitive, too. We’re expecting her to have a big season.”
Hartfield opens the season against East Rankin Academy Monday at the Madison Madness tournament at MRA.