Searching for a new group of stars

All seven local programs searching for reliable scoring and defense.

November 26, 2010|By Charles Rich,
  • [Melanie Minas, left, of the Crescenta Valley High girls' basketball team during a recent practice.
[Melanie Minas, left, of the Crescenta Valley High girls'… (Raul Roa, Glendale…)

GLENDALE — For those looking to be the area's next top-caliber girls' basketball players, step right up.

Part of the landscape will be noticeably different this season following the departures of Cassie Pappas and Megan Musashi to college. For most of the past four seasons, Pappas and Musashi scored their share of points and helped their teams at Crescenta Valley High and Flintridge Prep, respectively, win plenty of games.

The timetable of high school sports isn't very long, meaning there's plenty at stake in finding potential standouts who might have the ability to carry the torch.

"That's life in high school sports," Flintridge Prep Coach Todd Frost said. "You get those special players like Megan and you have them and watch them grow.

"Then they are gone. But, it's a thing where it's happened before and you just hope that you have that next special player who can keep the program going."


Pappas, the reigning All-Area Player of the Year, averaged 25.2 points per game and ranked eighth in the state in scoring average last season. She had the ability to carry the Falcons for long stretches, making Crescenta Valley Coach Jason Perez's job a bit easier.

"She could do a lot of things that were amazing," Perez said. "She could score, rebound and defend so well and it's going to be hard to replace her."

There might be some players in the current cast who are ready to stand up and lead their squads to a league championship or a spot in the playoffs.

Crescenta Valley, Flintridge Prep, Glendale, Hoover, Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy, Holy Family and Glendale Adventist Academy are eager to find out.

At Crescenta Valley, the Falcons return one starter from a squad that won 24 games last season and advanced to the quarterfinals for the first time since 2001. That will be senior guard Melanie Minas, who averaged seven points per game last season and helped the Falcons place second in the Pacific League behind Muir.

Perez will look to find suitable replacements to those he lost to graduation. There are some candidates, including junior guard Catherine Davis, senior forward Sarah Yoon and freshman forward Ella Stepanian.

"The group that we had last year was phenomenal, but it's a brand new team now," Perez said. "You lose a group like that that's won 62 games the past three seasons and you are kind of starting again from scratch.

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