BY ANDY ROWER | MIRROR SPORTS — The Mirror is pleased to announce the 21st consecutive selections for its Northern Lakes League-wide boys and girls basketball teams.
What makes the All-Mirror teams different from the all-league teams is that all 36 of the spots on The Mirror’s teams are based on overall year-end statistics – including non-league games – and all intangibles with which they helped their teams, with no consideration being given to the players’ grade level or past years’ performances.
The league’s longest tenured coach, Perrysburg’s Dave Boyce led the Yellow Jackets in fulfilling their preseason predictions by wining the NLL with a conference mark of 12-2.
Standouts such as Zach Miller, Drew Paule, Drew Sims and Jackson Sizemore led Perrysburg to an overall mark of 18-5 and a trip to the sectional championship game in the postseason.
For his part, Boyce earned the title of Mirror Coach of the Year for the eighth time.
Third-year coach Josh Arthur’s Anthony Wayne Generals also finished as predicted by placing as NLL runners up at 11-3.
Led by Bobby Miller, Kyle Ray, Zac Szul and Ben Wyrick, Anthony Wayne also played in the sectional championship game, where the Generals ultimately finished the season at 14-9.
Southview was predicted to finish fifth this year, but the Cougars had other ideas.
Despite having just two seniors on its roster, Southview ended up taking third in the NLL at 10-4 in coach Mike Bretelson’s second season.
Players like A.J. Jump, Tommy Mackinnon, Sean Millington and Grant Pahl made sure the Cougars wouldn’t be overlooked next year when they led their squad to an overall record of 17-7 and a trip to the district semifinals.
Northview and Spring-field next tied for fourth with identical 8-6 NLL marks.
Though coach Jeremy McDonald’s Wildcats were originally predicted to finish third, they more than made up for it with the league’s deepest tournament run.
McDonald’s fifth season saw players such as Sean Craig and Grant Hartnett led the team all the way to the district finals.
Northview eventually dropped that game to Start in a 57-53 overtime match, finishing the season with an overall record of 15-11.
Despite being just a sophomore, the 6-foot, 6-inch Craig earned this year’s title of Mirror Player of the Year after leading the league in scoring and blocks and pulling down the second most rebounds.
The Blue Devils finished exactly where predicted in coach Kyle Linehan’s fifth season at the helm.
Like Anthony Wayne and Perrysburg, Springfield played in the sectional championship game, thanks in large part to players like Bo Bucher, Deon Key, Elijah Kimmons and Denzel Stuart.
The Blue Devils closed things out with an overall mark of 12-10.
Initially selected to finish eighth, Bowling Green bumped up two spots to sixth under third-year coach Marshal Headley.
Bobcats players such as Eli Brown, Kaleb Gerken, Ryan Jackson and future University of Indianapolis football player Dylan Kroggel helped their team to a 4-10 NLL record and a 7-15 overall mark.
Chad Bostelman’s Napoleon Wildcats finished in their predicted seventh-place spot in his first year as head coach.
Napoleon players like Jarrett Gerdeman, Joshua Mack and Landon Willeman led their squad to a NLL record of 2-12 and an overall mark of 5-17.
Originally slated sixth, Maumee closed things out with an eighth-place NLL record of 1-13 in coach Ryan Osier’s third season.
Mike Pacer, David Walker and Garret White helped the Panthers to a final overall mark of 2-21.
The Mirror would like to wish the best of luck to the 13 seniors on this year’s boys teams, four of which had committed to play college basketball as of May 1.
On the girls side, Napoleon not only bettered its preseason predictions by winning an NLL championship, but also went on to post a perfect 27-0 overall record on the season.
In the process, fifth-year coach Corey Kreinbrink’s Wildcats advanced all the way to the Division II state quarterfinals before the tournament was ultimately cancelled due to the Coronavirus pandemic – a heartbreaking situation for standout players such as Emma Pedroza, Shae Pedroza, Caely Ressler and Taylor Strock.
Kreinbrink earned his second consecutive Mirror Coach of the Year title for his leadership.
The preseason favorite, Southview placed second this year with an 11-3 NLL mark and went 18-6 overall under third-year coach and former Mirror Player of the Year Kelly Heil.
Led by players like Halle Barnett, Chaise Brown, Cierra Harris and Charnae Merrell, the Cougars went on to advance to the district semifinals before dropping a 56-51 game to Start.
Perrysburg moved up a notch to tie Southview or second at 11-3 under 11th-year coach Todd Sims.
Equally impressive was the fact that players such as Jade Faris, Kylie Griggs, Gracie Mitchell and Macie Stringfellow led the Yellow Jackets all the way to a 20-7 record and advancement to the Division I regional finals, where they dropped a 50-43 game to No. 7 Notre Dame.
Fifth-year coach Pat Sayre and his Northview Wildcats next finished as predicted in fourth place with a 7-7 NLL mark.
Players like Kacee Baumhower and Carly Maple headed Northview all the way to an overall record of 15-11 and a trip to the district finals, where they dropped a 37-35 game to Notre Dame.
Baumhower was an easy choice for the Mirror Player of the Year title after leading the NLL in scoring, assists and steals and was the third-best rebounder.
Jami Carter’s Anthony Wayne Generals bumped up a spot to tie the Wildcats for fourth at 7-7 in her second year as the Generals head coach.
Anthony Wayne also played for a sectional championship and compiled an overall mark of 13-10, thanks largely to players such as Sam Schofield and Kelsey Ragan.
First-year head coach Clifton Hodges guided his Springfield team to a sixth place NLL record of 3-11 and an overall mark of 4-20.
The Blue Devils were originally predicted to finish seventh and played in the sectional championship game and were led by players like Markiya Cunningham and Mia Rose.
Second-year coach Alexis Rogers and her Bowling Green Bobcats also climbed a spot to finish seventh with an NLL record of 2-11.
Shani Estep led the Bobcats to an overall record of 3-20.
Third-year coach Jyl McCarthy’s Maumee Panthers rounded things out with an NLL mark of 1-13.
Brynn Brown and Sophie King led the Panthers, whose overall record ended up being 1-22.
The Mirror would like to wish the best of luck to the seven senior team members who will graduate this spring, including three who will continue playing in college.