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The coaches’ best: Basketball Coaches Association of Michigan honors Negaunee’s Jason Waterman, area girls from Westwood, Munising and L’Anse as tops in their divisions statewide

Westwood senior Tessa Leece, right, tries to slip past Calumet's Elli Djerf in their MHSAA Division 3 regional tournament semifinal game played at Marquette Senior High School on March 10. (Journal file photo by Ryan Spitza)

On the Net: For the current list of 2019-20 BCAM awards, go to www.bcam.org/2019-bcam-awards-published

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MIDLAND — Five area players are listed as among the best in the state in their divisions through awards made by a state high school basketball coaches group.

The Basketball Coaches Association of Michigan presents the awards annually for its BCAM Best.

The organization points out that players are chosen only from schools whose coaches are members of the group, which in this area includes coaches at Marquette, Negaunee, Ishpeming, Westwood, Gwinn, L’Anse and Munising.

Westwood's Madelyn Koski, front, drives past Gladstone's Maddie Ahlgren during their Mid-Peninsula Conference girls basketball game played Jan. 14 at the Braves' gym. (Escanaba Daily Press photo by Austin Hemmingson)

Jason Waterman of Negaunee was the lone area boy chosen as BCAM’s Best as he represented Division 3. The 6-foot-tall senior was an All-Upper Peninsula Dream Team member, West PAC Dream Teamer and Mid-Peninsula Conference First Team member.

He scored 15.5 points per game, eclipsing the 1,000-point barrier in his high school career early last season as he made 54 percent on 2-pointers, 44.3 percent on 3-pointers and 77.4 percent on free throws.

On the girls side, four area players made their all-division teams, two in D-3 and two in D-4.

From Division 3, Westwood senior teammates Madelyn Koski and Tessa Leece continued to be nearly joined at the hip as honorees.

Leece was an All-U.P. Dream Team honoree, while Koski was on the Divisions 1-3 First Team. Leece also made the Associated Press’ Second Team all-state as Koski was honorable mention.

Negaunee's Jason Waterman, front, shoots in front of Hancock's Elijah Packard, right, on Jan. 20 in Hancock. (Houghton Daily Mining Gazette photo by Adam Niemi)

Leece was M-PC and West PAC Player of the Year in both conferences for the second straight year as she also made all-defensive teams in each league. Leece averaged 12.8 ppg and nearly six rebounds and four assists with more than three steals per game as she made 42 percent from the field, 35 percent on 3s and 72 percent free throws.

Koski was Dream Team in the West PAC and First Team in the M-PC as she averaged 12.3 ppg with nearly four assists and 2 1/2 steals while making 38 percent of her shots overall, 33 percent on triples and 76 percent on free throws.

Representing BCAM’s Best in Division 4 were Megan Matson of Munising and Maija Rice of L’Anse.

Matson, a 5-8 senior, made the All-U.P. Division 4 and Skyline Central Conference First Team as she averaged 20 ppg, nine rebounds, three assists, three steals and two blocked shots, making 54 percent from the field and 68 percent on her free throws.

Rice, a 5-7 junior, was All-U.P. Second Team and on the Copper Mountain Conference Elite Team.

Munising's Megan Matson, center, takes a shot over Bark River-Harris' Cara Zawacki, left, as the Broncos' Riley Arndt looks on during their Skyline Central Conference girls basketball game played Jan. 14 in Harris. (Escanaba Daily Press photo by Justin St. Ours)

Another half-dozen area players earned honorable mention in their divisions.

For the boys, that was junior Kameron Karp of Marquette in Division 1 and senior Jakson Sager of Negaunee in Division 3.

The girls selections included senior Aspen Michelin of Marquette in Division 1, senior Marissa Delmont of Gwinn and sophomore Alyssa Hill of Negaunee in Division 3, and senior Kaylin Voskuhl of L’Anse in Division 4.

The highest honored U.P. player was Foster Wonders of Iron Mountain, a Best of the Best all-division pick for the boys.

Making their all-division teams from elsewhere in the U.P. were, for the boys, Keagan Monroe of Menominee and Brad Simonsen of Houghton in Division 2; Marcus Johnson of IM in Division 3; and Jaden Borseth of Ewen-Trout Creek, Nicholas Edington of Pickford, Davin Hill and Ashton Janke of Dollar Bay, and Brett LaFord of Carney-Nadeau in Division 4.

Among the girls, divisional awards from other areas of the U.P. went to Emma Anderson of Menominee, Julia Beaumont of Sault Ste. Marie and Megan Crow of Gladstone in Division 2; and Elise Besonen of E-TC, Kennedy Guild of Pickford, Emmalee Hart, Hallie Marshall and Ally Schultz of St. Ignace, Mercedes Simmons of Forest Park and Sophia Vaughn of Engadine in Division 4.

Steve Brownlee can be reached at 906-228-2500, ext. 252. His email address is sbrownlee@miningjournal.net.

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