Gadsden City duo highlights All-Messenger basketball teams

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By Chris McCarthy/Editor

Gadsden City High doubled up on local postseason basketball honors.

The Titans’ Chris Dudley and Haley Troup are The Messenger’s respective boys and girls Player of the Year for the 2014-15 season.

A 6-3 senior guard, Dud-ley averaged 23 points and seven rebounds per game while helping the Titans post a 24-6 record and qualify for the Northeast Regional Tournament finals. He finished his GCHS career as the program’s all-time leading scorer with 1,232 points. Dudley also set the school’s single game scoring record earlier this season with 35 points against Austin High.

Dudley, who was the first Alabama alternate for last month’s Alabama/Mi-ssissippi All-Star game, has drawn interest from Gadsden State, Jacksonville State, Murray State, University of Mobile and Three Rivers University of Missouri. 

“Chris is a very coachable kid and a very good student-athlete who takes his grades very seriously,” said GCHS boys head coach Reginald Huff. “He a great leader who leads by example and does all the intangible things well. He started at point guard on the JV as a ninth grader and moved on up to the varsity the next season, so he’s got a lot of experience under his belt. 

“Chris is a consistent scorer, and any time you have someone who can fill it up, you have the opportunity to win ball games. I can’t say enough of how well Chris led as one of our senior captains, and I’m looking forward for Chris going to the next level and being very successful.”

A 5’10 sophomore guard, Troup averaged 15.7 points, seven rebounds and 4.3 assists for a Lady Titan squad that went 24-5 and earned a berth in the Northeast Regional Tournament championship. Troup scored her 1,000th career point in January.

“Haley’s definitely one of the most well-rounded players that we’ve had here,” said GCHS girls head coach Jeremy Brooks. “Making second team all-state in 7A as a sophomore rarely happens, and Haley was playing top-notch competition night in and night out against future D-I players. She’s just continued to improve since she’s been here (Troup played her seventh and eighth grade seasons at Southside). 

“Haley’s biggest things are that she’ll well-rounded and she’s smart on both sides of the ball. She’s not as fast or as quick as some of the players she faces, but she’s strong, and that matters.”

The apple didn’t fall far from the tree in Troup’s case, as her dad Kevin was a four-year starter at point guard at Emma Sansom High School in the late 1980s. He later was boys head coach for both the Rebels and Southside High and currently is an assistant under Brooks.

“You don’t get to the level where Haley is overnight,” said Brooks. “Being taught the fundamentals at an early age and just being around the game is a big help. She knows the game very well and has worked at it all year round with AAU ball, summer workouts and going to a personal trainer.”

Although only a sophomore, Troup has been a varsity starter since her seventh grade season, so she already is a seasoned veteran in terms of court sense.

“With both Haley and [fellow sophomore guard and four-year starter] Brooke Burns, it felt like we had a pair of seniors in the backcourt last season,” said Brooks. “They’re both very good leaders by example, but next year as juniors I expect them to step up and be a bit more vocal, too.” 

Joining Dudley on the boys first team is teammate and senior guard Josh Juddine, a Class 7A All-State honorable mention pick who averaged 16 points and seven rebounds while setting the GCHS boys record for most 3-point baskets at 52; Westbrook Christian junior forward Chandler Richards, who averaged 14.2 points and 6.6 rebounds while helping the Warriors go 22-8 and make it to the Class 3A regional finals; Hokes Bluff junior center Kaden Moore, a Class 4A All-State third team selection whose average of 15.8 points and 10 rebounds helped the Eagles go 21-9, win the Etowah Coun-ty Tournament and make it the subregional playoff round; and Gaston senior Albert Douglas, who led the Bulldogs with an average of 16 points six rebounds, five assists and two steals per game while shooting 82 percent at the free throw line and 76 percent from the field. 

The girls first team also features Gadsden City so-phomore guard Brooke Burns, who averaged 13.5 points, seven rebounds and 3.5 assists; Hokes Bluff senior guard Hannah Evans, a Class 4A All-State honorable mention pick who was good for 13.3 points, 4.2 rebounds, 3.1 assists and 2.6 steals a game while the Lady Eagles finished with a 22-10 record, the county and area tournament championships and an appearance in the Northeast Regional Tournament semifinals; Westbrook junior guard Abby Lockridge, a Class 3A All-State third team selection who averaged 16.4 points, 9.4 rebounds, 3.8 assists and 2.7 steals while shooting 80 percent at the free throw line and 41 percent from the 3-point line; and Glencoe senior for-ward Sally Tinker, who averaged 15 points, seven re-bounds, two assists and two steals while helping the Lady Yellow Jackets win the Etowah County Tournament and make it to the Northeast Regional Tournament Class 3A se-mifinals. She finished her prep career with 1,004 points. 

2015 All-Messenger basketball team

Boys

Player of the Year 

Chris Dudley, Sr., Gadsden City

First Team

Josh Juddine, Sr., Gadsden City

Chandler Richards, Jr., Westbrook

Kaden Moore, Jr., Hokes Bluff

Albert Douglas, Sr., Gaston

Second team

Denzel Aaron, Sr., Etowah

Caden Davison, Soph., Coosa Chr. 

Pace Ozmint, Jr., Glencoe

Brack Shields, Sr., Hokes Bluff

Saige Benson, Sr., Southside

Third team

Jalen Williams, Sr., Etowah

Dalton Roberts, Jr., Glencoe

Dalton Harris, Jr., Southside

Kyle Leonard, Jr., Westbrook

Jaxson Haygood, Sr., Sardis

Girls

Player of the Year 

Haley Troup, Gadsden City

First Team

Hannah Evans, Sr., Hokes Bluff

Sally Tinker, Sr., Glencoe

Abby Lockridge, Jr., Westbrook

Brooke Burns, Soph., Gadsden City

Second team

Maelin Trammell, Sr., Etowah

Blakely Alfred, Jr., Southside

Takara Blount, Sr., Gadsden City

Jessica Rathje, Sr., Glencoe

Abby Elrod, Sr., Gaston

Third team

Tylynn Register, Soph., Hokes Bluff

Brittany Self, Sr., West End

Lindsey Hindsman, Sr., Southside

Brooke Perry, Sr., Etowah

Samara Brewster, Coosa Christian

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