Sophomore stars: Top class of 2022 girls basketball players in L.A. City Section

With the 2019-2020 high school girls basketball season over, we’re taking a look at the best players in Southern California, class by class. Here’s a look at the top sophomores in L.A. City Section girls basketball. All statistics and other information referenced are from the 2019-2020 season.

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10. Michelle Cortez – G – Central City Value

Cortez played less than half a season in 2019-2020, but she averaged 8.7 points, 7.8 rebounds, six assists, and 5.8 steals per game for the Division 3 champs. Expect her to status to rise if she continues to produce like that over a full season as Central City Value continues to ascend.

9. Mary Bimat-Townsend – F/C – Hamilton

Spending time at both power forward and center for the Open Division runner-up, Townsend made an impact defending the paint. She was strong defending both in help and against other bigs in the post, rebounded at a high clip, and also finished consistently around the rim. She didn’t put up big numbers, but her all-around energy playing with both the first and second units was vital to Hamilton’s run.

8. Asiah Harris – F – Fairfax

Harris was named Second Team All-Western League and was arguably Fairfax’s best player as a sophomore. She high upside with a strong combination of length, athleticism, and ability to get hot from the field.

7. Payshance Walk – G/F – Crenshaw

Payshance Walk, No. 32

One of the most dangerous shooters in the class, Walk averaged 6.4 points, 2.9 rebounds, and 1.3 steals per game while converting threes at a high rate.

6. Ayana Peterson Henry – G/F – Verdugo Hills

One of the top players in Division 4, Peterson Henry averaged over 11 points, four rebounds, four assists, two steals, and a block per game last season. Verdugo Hills will return much of their championship team with the potential to make some noise even with a stronger schedule, which would boost Peterson Henry’s stock significantly.

5. Danielle Burnside – F – Westchester

With the length of a post player and athleticism of a wing, Burnside helped clean the glass and defend multiple positions for the Division 1 champion.

4. Payton Walk – C/F – Crenshaw

Payton Walk, No. 23

Walk averaged 5.2 points, seven rebounds, and 1.2 blocks per game for the City’s fifth-place finisher. She scored very efficiently in 2019-2020 and will be one of the biggest breakout candidates in the section next season.

3. Audrey Quintana – G – Taft

Quintana was one of the best players on Open Division selectee Taft, averaging 7.8 points, 4.4 rebounds, 4.7 assists, and 1.6 steals per game. She was one of only two underclasswomen to make either All-West Valley League team–the other is next.

2. Janna Holley – G – Birmingham

Janna Holley, No. 2

Holley averaged 11 points, 4.8 rebounds, and a team-high 4.1 assists and 2.3 steals per game for the Patriots. She was already one of the top point guards in the section last season, but expect her to break out next season as one of the best players in the section outright.

1. Demoni Lagway – G/F – Palisades

As just a sophomore, Lagway was one of the top players on the best team in the City Section and CIF Division 2 Southern Region champion. She’s a dangerous shooter and versatile defender who also improved her ability to create and finish off the dribble throughout the season. Lagway will enter 2020-2021 as a clear-cut preseason MVP candidate on a team with multiple others.


Maryjane Valles – F/C Chavez

Esmeralda Aviles – F/G – Chavez

Destiny Salcedo – G – Arleta

Jessica Flores – F – Arleta

Faith Gibbs – G – Taft

Calista Arzaga – G – Granada Hills Charter

Lupita Medina – F – Bell

Gabriela Cruz – G – Sun Valley Poly

Sophia Canter – G/F – Palisades

Sydney Meskin – G – Palisades

Sage Lazarovits – F/C – El Camino Real

Savannah Prasad – G – Westchester

Sasha Capers – G – Westchester

Ayanna Brown – G/F – Carson

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