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Capping a stellar prep basketball career, Newton-Conoverâ€™s Shynese Whitener was named the 2012 District 10 girls basketball player of the year by the North Carolina Basketball Coaches Association (NCBCA).
Receiving the honor caught the senior off guard.
â€śIâ€™m definitely surprised,â€ť Whitener said. â€śIâ€™m still shocked. Itâ€™s an honor to receive this award. It was fun just going out every night, having my teammates support and playing basketball. It goes to show you that hard work pays off.â€ť
Whitener adds the District 10 honor to a list of many accomplishments during her Red Devil career, including conference player of the year (2010), all-conference for four years (2008-11), Catawba Valley Classic tournament MVP (2011) and All-West Regional tournament team (2010-11).
Whitener said she tried to learn each year as a Lady Red Devil and grow from the knowledge she gained on and off the court.
â€śWhen I started as a freshman, it was rough,â€ť she said. â€śI had teammates transfer in. We had a new coach. Everyone was expecting us to be this and that. It was a fun learning experience to be a part of Newton-Conover basketball. Just to grow as a person and basketball player because of our coaches and teammates pushing me was very interesting and fun.â€ť
Whitener, along with fellow senior teammate and District 10 third-team member Kadesha Gibbs, are two players on a prestigious list of Lady Red Devils basketball players to score 1,000 points. That list also includes Taylor Deal (2005-08), Betsy Gaither (2005-08) and Tisha England (1988-92). Gibbs is also a 1,000-point rebounder.
One memory of Whitenerâ€™s N-C career rises above the rest.
â€śMy sophomore year I got conference player of the year, and we went to Greensboro,â€ť she said. â€śI enjoyed the moment and not taking for granted being down in Greensboro. Having teammates that love you and coaches, those are great moments.â€ť
Whitener is currently deciding on her college choice and has narrowed it down to a few schools, including East Carolina and Cape Fear (Wilmington).
5 county athletes on second, third teams
Five Catawba County girls basketball players were named to the District 10 second and third teams.
Three county athletes â€” including Newton-Conoverâ€™s Kadesha Gibbs, Fred T. Foardâ€™s Brooke Robinson and Hickoryâ€™s Danasia Witherspoon â€” made the second team.
Two other Lady Red Tornadoes â€” Yazmin Hannah and Aja Hoyle â€” made the third team.View more articles in: