By Amanda Eggert EBS Staff Writer
BIG SKY – District coaches have recognized one Big Horn and two Lady Big Horns for their talent, leadership and hustle on the basketball court this past season. All three have been named First Team All-Conference.
It’s repeat recognition for the trio – last year, Eddie Starz was named Second Team All-Conference, Dasha Bough was named First Team All-Conference, and this is the third consecutive year Luisa Locker has earned All-Conference honors.
Each of the district’s 22 coaches nominates players from their own teams for recognition and a list of these players is reviewed during a coaches meeting at the district tournament. Lone Peak High School head coaches Nubia Allen and Al Malinowski had the opportunity to advocate for each of their nominees.
Each coach then compiles a list of 22 players from other teams, and the athletes accrue points based on their relative positions on each list. Coaches can’t vote for their own players. The points are tallied, and the top 11 players are named First Team All–Conference, with the balance rounding out the Second Team.
Starz, a junior guard, set a number of LPHS scoring records this season, including most career points (827), most points in a season (434), most points in a game (39), and most free-throw points in a season (85). He broke several of his own records from last season.
Starz’s scoring reached double digits every game this season, and he scored 20 or more points in 10 games. Malinowski said he’s pleased with Starz’s ability to consistently put points on the board, as well as the leadership he demonstrated over the course of the season.
“He made sure that if his teammates were open, they got the ball,” Malinowski said. “That’s what made our overall team development stronger and [Starz] showed that he was willing to take on more of a leadership role this season besides just being our leading scorer.”
Malinowski also highlighted Starz’s contributions in other aspects of the game, noting that his defense has improved and an average of 6.5 rebounds per game is impressive for a guard who takes a lot of outside shots. He also led the Big Horns in steals.
Junior guard Dasha Bough led the Lady Big Horns in scoring this season with an average of 11.4 points per game. She’s a well-rounded scorer, making shots from the perimeter as well as in the paint.
“She can do it all,” Allen said. “She can penetrate, she can shoot the three and she can shoot the mid-range jumper.”
Allen added that other coaches in the district have been impressed by Bough’s determination. “I’ve never seen someone as competitive as her,” Allen said.
Bough is also an ace free-throw shooter – she made 69 percent of her shots from the foul line this season.
Junior point guard Luisa Locker led the Lady Big Horns in steals this season with an average of three per game and was the second leading scorer, averaging 10 points per game.
“She has a high IQ for the game,” Allen said. “She’s a good passer and an excellent penetrator. And she can shoot the three.”
Allen noted that she made the Lady Big Horns’ final basket of the season, a 3-pointer that brought LPHS to within one point in their 57-56 loss to Shields Valley at the district tournament.
“She has progressed as a true leader,” Allen said. “When she’s on, she’s on, and the whole team is going to feed off of that.”
Both teams are looking strong going into next season. The Big Horns will lose just one player to graduation and the Lady Big Horns didn’t have any seniors on their roster this year.