From Glacier Peak’s Aaliyah Collins to Mount Spokane’s Jayda Noble, there are dozens of outstanding defenders in Washington high school girls basketball.
With the 2019-20 season finished, we’re taking a look at the Top 11 ball defenders in the state, regardless of classification.
We polled 20 coaches from around the state on their thoughts on players in their league and district.
Some of the best players in the state could obviously be listed under a number of categories, but SB Live tried to place them on the one list that best fits their skill sets (and reputation).
The rankings ultimately were compiled by SB Live basketball analyst Freddie Rehkow and SB Live Washington reporter Todd Milles.
The players are listed in alphabetical order:
TOP 11 DEFENSIVE PLAYERS
Aaliyah Alexander, Beamer, Senior
This EWU signee is a different level of strong at guard, and the two-time 4A NPSL all-defensive performer is a permanent clamp on opposing ball handlers.
Camille Carpenter, Moses Lake, Senior
How good is Carpenter’s on-ball defense? Southern Utah recruited her based on how well she guarded every position, from guards to post players.
Aaliyah Collins, Glacier Peak, Junioir
Who has the quickest hands in Washington basketball? By the sheer number of slap-the-ball-away buckets in transition she gets, Collins wins.
Dalayah Daniels, Garfield, Senior
There isn’t a player in the state like her – tall (6-4), long-armed and athletic to swat away shots from all angles and poke away passes on the perimeter.
Elise Hani, Lake Washington, Sophomore
As a 6-foot-4 volleyball standout, you’d expect Hani to be an around-the-rim enforcer. And she is, averaging four blocked shots a game as a sophomore.
Peyton Howard, Central Valley, Senior
The whole Bears’ squad plays physical defense, but Howard sets the tone up top. The Seattle U. signee dares you to go by her … and then the fun begins.
Fatoumata Jaiteh, Meadowdale, Junior
Jaiteh’s offensive game is still in the works, but on defense, she is multi-level pogo stick – blocking shots near the lane and at the 3-point line.
Emilia Long, Port Angeles, Junior
Some guards rely on quickness to notch steals, but Long – a standout soccer player – is all about strength and anticipation as 2A’s top outside defender.
Jayda Noble, Mount Spokane, Senior
This Washington signee does everything, especially on defense. With her length, quickness and smarts, she is a vacuum for post-entry passes.
Mjracle Sheppard, Eastside Catholic, Freshman
Rarely does a ninth grader come in and create this kind of havoc, but the shifty Sheppard was the juice in the Crusaders’ maniacal fullcourt pressure.
Lolo Weatherspoon, Union, Junior
If you had this Southwest Washington standout guarding you, it was like charging into a wall. Her position defense was as good as there was in 4A.
Worth mentioning: Tiarra Brown, Bethel, sr.; Elizabeth Frazier, Lincoln, sr.; Evie Ioane, Decatur, jr.; Dylan Philip, Ellensburg, so.; Michael Pitts, Central Valley, sr.; Shaylin Sande, Glacier Peak, sr.; Audrey Tommervick, Tahoma, jr.; Sharay Trotter, Beamer, sr.; Anna Vanderyacht, Lynden, jr.; Abigail Zavala, Sunnyside, sr.