Need a stop? Here's my stance
By Shayne Combs
Piketon's Caleb Southworth and Unioto's Shiann Ray
anchor SVCsportszone's All-SVC Defensive Team
F = Caleb Southworth, Piketon (DEF. POY)
F = Rick Chamberlin, Zane Trace
C = Alex Kimsey, Unioto
G = Gabe Haynes, Zane Trace
G = Bryant Gibson, Westfall
F = Chloe Cottrell, Unioto
F = Tristan Rumfield, Paint Valley
C = Erin Dailey, Zane Trace
G = Shiann Ray, Unioto (DEF. POY)
G = Bridgette Neighbors, Huntington
I have seen very few players in recent years who
can impact a game on the defensive end the way
Piketon’s Caleb Southworth can do on a
nightly basis. His versatility allows him to guard
any of the five spots on the floor – a
characteristic that makes him a true defensive
stopper. At 6-6, Southworth is –in my opinion â
€“ the best overall athlete in the SVC, and his two
steals and three blocks per game makes him my
SVC Defensive Player of the Year on the boysâ
€™ side.

Joining Southworth on the frontline of my All-
Defensive Team would be forward Rick
Chamberlin of Zane Trace and Unioto center Alex
Kimsey. Kimsey and his league leading shot
blocking and rebounding made the center position
a no-brainer. His 3.4 blocks per game, not to
mention how many shots he changes as well,
helped Unioto’s defense become one of the
true bright spots during a tough season for the
Tanks. As for Chamberlin, the junior center made
some big plays on the defensive end for the
Pioneers. With Zane Trace’s lack of size,
Chamberlin was forced to do a lot on the interior
in terms of defending and rebounding. This
forward spot was probably the spot I struggled
with the most in terms of my decision because of
Westfall’s Tyler Cobb. Cobb is an incredible
athlete who can really get off the floor, but I feel
Westfall offered him some better frontline help on
the defensive end compared to what Chamberlin
was forced to shoulder for the red, white, and

On the perimeter, Bryant Gibson will hound the
ball with Gabe Haynes defending the off guard
position. Adena’s Ben Bower and Buddy
Barnes definitely need to be considered due to
their quickness, toughness, and solid defensive
stats; however, Gibson is the kid I want on my
team if I need a play made on the defensive end. I
love his energy, his competitiveness, and his will to
win. As for Haynes, I love his ability to deny the
wing, and lately, the job he has done in the
tournament on Blake Justice of Peebles and TVC
Player of the Year in Alexander’s Greg Frost
makes him the guy I want with Gibson in the
backcourt if I need a stop to win.
Unioto’s Shiann Ray anchors my All-
Defensive Team on the girls’ side. Ray is an
outstanding athlete with great quickness, and her
basketball instinct and intelligence is unmatched
throughout the league. Joining Ray at guard if I
needed a stop would be Huntington’s
Bridgette Neighbors. Neighbors is a great
competitor who averages over two steals per
game, and her toughness as helped Huntington
post a league’s second-best 39.1 points per
game allowed to their opponents.

At center, I would take Zane Trace’s 6-0
sophomore Erin Dailey. Dailey has blocked a shot
and a half per game while recording one steal per
game as well, and her overall athleticism gives a
very balanced Zane Trace team a lot of versatility.
I know Olivia and Mackenzie Arledge both had
great stats at the center position, and many people
probably think there are better defenders on
Dailey’s own team; however, in evaluating the
center position only, I feel Dailey brings the most
versatility on the defensive end. Joining Dailey on
the frontline is Paint Valley's Tristan Rumfield and
Unioto’s Chloe Cottrell. Rumfield plays with
great energy and brings a lot of toughness to the
paint. At only 5-9, Rumfield led the league in
rebounding and recorded over two steals per
game. Cottrell has an outstanding understanding of
the game. Unioto’s Ms. Intangible has done
all the little things for her basketball team
throughout the year, and the defensive end has
been no exception. Her strength and athleticism
allows her to guard multiple positions while
averaging over two steals per game.

Unioto's Janae Driggs and Piketon's Holly
Brabson had some nice stats as well, but I just feel
Cottrell and Rumfield are better all-around
defenders at this point in their careers.
Credit for the above photo goes to Kim Cottrell