Leader Blues

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

SPORTS>>Asiah ascending

By JASON KING
Leader sportswriter

Size is only one characteristic of someone who walks tall.

At 6-0, Lonoke senior post player Asiah Scribner has the size, but she also has the other attributes that make a player stand above the rest.

For her qualities and accomplishments, Scribner is the All-Leader girls player of the year.

“A girl like her comes along once in a long time,” Lonoke coach Nathan Morris said. “The things she can do with a basketball — and I think her best basketball is ahead of her.

“When she’s in a tough mode, she’s extremely hard to handle. She can guard any position on the floor. And really, other than point guard, there’s not a spot she can’t play.”

Scribner has started since her freshman year, making three trips to the 4A state championship game her first three seasons.

She wrapped up her high-school career this year with conference, district and regional championships and a trip to the 4A state semifinals.

“On game day, there is no underdog, no ranking,” Scribner said. “It’s just who can go out and play the best game that day.”
Scribner was named All-State for the third time and averaged 15.1 points, 10.2 rebounds and 2.1 steals a game. She led the
Lady Jackrabbits with a 59.3 field-goal percentage and also led in charging fouls taken.

Scribner, with fellow seniors Michaela Brown and Ashleigh Himstedt, was looking to make a fourth trip to the 4A state finals before Prairie Grove derailed Lonoke in the state semifinals earlier this month.

“It was awful,” Scribner said. “I didn’t know what it was like not to be able to go to the state championship game. I didn’t before now. I use to wonder would it be worse to go and lose, or lose early. But, either way it goes, it’s all bad.”

Scribner has been looked to as a leader since her sophomore season. By her junior year, she and Brown were the two most experienced players on the Lady Jackrabbits.

Shiloh Christian beat Lonoke in the 2009 4A state championship, marking the third time Scribner and the LadyJackrabbits went to the final and came up short.

Lonoke was a favorite to return to Summit Arena in Hot Springs for this year’s final, and swept the 2-4A Conference at 14-0.

Lonoke also cruised through the district and regional tournament to earn the No. 1 seed in the East.

“It went by real fast. And you don’t realize what you have until it’s gone,” Scribner said. “That’s what they say, and it’s really true. All the days we came in here and we were ready to get out, but when you get out you realize you really want to go back and do it all over again.”

Scribner took over a number of Lonoke’s conference games this season. She scored 19 points against Clinton and a game-high 23 against Heber Springs, including 10 straight points as part of a 20-0 run that put the game away for the Lady Jackrabbits.

The state championship may not have been meant to be for Scribner and her teammates, but the lack of a ring does not leave a vacancy in Scribner’s heart. There have been plenty of other things to fill that void, most notably friendship.

“I’d rather have what we have right now than to have won a championship,” Scribner said. “If it means making the friends I have now and getting to know all the people I have met, just being the person that I am, I think I’d rather just have this than a ring, honestly.”

Scribner is the youngest of four siblings and the daughter of Demetri Rice and Marvin Scribner. She will graduate seventh in her senior class with a 3.94 GPA and next fall will play for the UALR Trojans.

Scribner is leaning toward majoring in early childhood development or nursing, but has not ruled out coaching.

For Morris, now preparing for his sixth season, watching Scribner develop as a player and a person the past five seasons reminds him why he entered coaching.

“When she was in eighth grade, she was the typical awkward girl, you know, taller than the other girls and kind of shy, insecure,” Morris said. “She used to scrunch down so she wouldn’t look as tall. She doesn’t do that now.

“She’s leaving here a very intelligent and very responsible young lady. When she walks through those gym doors, she walks tall.”

SOPHOMORE OF YEAR

Melissa Wolff quickly emerged as a leading scorer and playmaker for the Cabot Lady Panthers this season.

Wolff averaged 12.5 points, seven rebounds, three assists per game and 2.5 steals a game and made 68 percent of her free throws.