With the 2014-2015 college basketball season already underway and the high school basketball season rapidly approaching, it's time to take one final look back at the recruiting class of 2014 in girls basketball. This is the deepest class of local basketball talent in a long time, with 34 players on the list who are now playing college ball. It was truly a pleasure covering all of them. Great players and great kids.
A whopping 14 of the players on this list won high school state championships, 16 if you count NEPSAC titles. Jamie Sherburne and Gigi Piercy won a D-I state title with Bishop Guertin as sophomores in 2011-2012. Melissa McLeod won a D-I title with Winnacunnet her freshman year in 2010-2011. Ali Glennon, Rachel Collins and Haley Driscoll led Bedford to the D-I state title their junior year in 2012-2013. Courtney Walsh (Windham, NH) and Alex Nagri (Salem, NH) led Central Catholic to the MIAA D-I state title their junior year in 2012-2013. Aliza Simpson and Elisabeth Caron won a D-I state title this past March as seniors for Londonderry. Samantha MacDonald and Heather King started for an undefeated championship team at Lebanon their junior year in 2012-2013. Emily Gaukstern and Amanda Gendron won D-I state titles at Souhegan. Kelsey Brown won a pair of NEPSAC championships at Tilton and Yvonne Dean-Bailey won a NEPSAC title at Phillips Exeter Academy.
NH isn't a basketball state? Don't try telling that to the kids from this class.
For four years Simpson and Sherburne had some epic battles in the back court. Sometimes Sherburne's Cardinals prevailed, sometimes it was Simpson's Lancers coming out on top. There's no doubt that they were both motivated by the other and pushed each other to get better. Both players won state title and Gatorade Player of the Year. One of the best classes of local girls hoops talent in a long time and the 2 best players from this class just happened to both be point guards from bordering towns (Londonderry and Hudson). It's fitting that both of them are now playing D-I college ball.
This was a class that will be best known for its point guards. In addition to Simpson and Sherburne, you also had Clairee Putnam, Sandi Purcell, MacDonald, Kayla Stacy, Brenna Blakslee and Morgan Church, plus combo-guards Walsh and Nagri. There hasn't been this many high level point guards from NH all from the same class in a very long time. Simpson is starting right off the bat for UNH, while Purcell and Stacy have both already earned Rookie of the Week honors in their respective conferences. Church overcame a torn ACL to achieve her goal of playing college ball.
Putnam and Glennon played AAU together with the NE Crusaders and now get to play together at Saint Anselm's. They played on the Crusaders along with Simpson, Walsh, Collins, Brown and Church. The St. Pierre sisters, Torieana and Dominique (Portsmouth, NH) will play their college ball together at Clark University. Two high schools are sending 3 players from this class to play college ball. They are Bedford (Collins, Driscoll and Glennon) and Alvirne (Purcell, Veronica Moceri and Brittney Lambert). If you include Sherburne and Emily Cuthbertson that makes a whopping 5 girls from Hudson on the list.
Congratulations to all of the players and best of luck with their college careers. Without any further ado, here is the New Hampshire Notebook's final girls basketball recruiting rankings list for the Class of 2014:
1. Jamie Sherburne, 5’7” Guard, Bishop Guertin HS...Niagara College
2. Aliza Simpson, 5’9” Guard, Londonderry HS...University of New Hampshire
3. Elisabeth Giegerich, 6'1" Forward, Tabor Academy...Eckerd College
4. Ali Glennon, 5’10” Guard, Bedford HS...Saint Anselm College
5. Melissa McLeod, 6'0" Forward, Winnacunnet HS...Southern New Hampshire University
6. Courtney Walsh, 5'7" Guard, Central Catholic HS...Stonehill College
7. Clairee Putnam, 5'5" Guard, Windham HS...Saint Anselm College
8. Sandi Purcell, 5’3" Guard, Alvirne HS...Keene State College
9. Haley Driscoll, 5'10" Forward, Bedford HS...Colby College
10. Rachel Collins, 5’8” Guard, Bedford HS...Middlebury College
11. Heather King, 5'11" Forward, Lebanon HS..Springfield College
12. Samantha MacDonald, 5'6" Guard, Lebanon HS...University of New England
13. Brenna Blakslee, 5'5" Guard, Salem HS...Worcester Polytechnic Institute
14. Kayla Stacy, 5’4" Guard, Pinkerton Academy...University of Southern Maine
15. Alex Nagri, 5'2" Guard, Central Catholic HS...Suffolk University
16. Morgan Church, 5'6" Guard, Proctor Academy...Lasell College
17. Kelsey Brown, 5'11" Forward, Tilton School...Hartwick College
18. Brandi Bonneau, 5'6" Guard, Pinkerton Academy...Regis College
19. Emily Hickey, 5'9" Guard, Salem HS...Connecticut College
20. Brittney Lambert, 5'9" Guard, Alvirne HS...Worcester Polytechnic Institute
21. Veronica Moceri, 5'6" Guard, Alvirne HS...Skidmore College
22. Allison Yeaw, 5'11" Forward, Keene HS...Roanoke College
23. Torieana St. Pierre, 5'11" Forward, Berwick Academy...Clark University
24. Dominique St. Pierre, 5'7" Guard, Berwick Academy...Clark University
25. Riselly Deoleo, 5'5" Guard, Bishop Brady HS...Wentworth Institute of Technology
26. Emily Cuthbertson, 5'4" Guard, New Hampton School...Wheaton College
27. Yvonne Dean-Bailey, 5'9" Guard, Phillips Exeter Academy...Mount Holyoke College
28. Gigi Piercy, 5’8” Guard, Bishop Guertin HS...Bard College
29. Elisabeth Caron, 5'10" Forward, Londonderry HS...Plymouth State University
30. Haley Wilder, 5'9" Forward, Vermont Academy...Clark University
31. Brianna Hoffman, 5'8" Wing, Milford HS...Curry College
32. Emily Gaukstern, 5'9" Forward, Souhegan HS...RPI
33. Amanda Gendron, 5'7" Wing, Souhegan HS...Daniel Webster College
34. Eileen Daley, 5'9" Wing, Hanover HS...Middlebury College