SJBL recognizes two Lady Miners

Telluride's Emma Reggiannini (20) pulls up for a short jumper during district-tournament play in Ridgway versus Mancos. The Lady Miners' top scorer in several games this winter, Reggiannini was recently named Second Team All-San Juan Basin League for the completed 2022-23 basketball season; teammate Tjarn Lyons received Honorable Mention All-SJBL. (Courtesy photo)

Telluride’s progression-filled 2022-23 girls’ basketball season wasn’t about statistics.

Never really was.

But when numbers were registered, or mere goals achieved, the Lady Miners weren’t quiet in their celebrations.

And sure enough, despite a collective 0-20 finish, a pair of prime performers recently earned just praise for their play. Seldom hesitant to attempt an open shot from anywhere on the floor, and especially inside the three-point arc, while also emerging as one of THS’ top rebounders, sophomore Emma Reggiannini was named Second Team All-San Juan Basin League (SJBL).

“You know, Emma has been just relentless — that’s the way I would describe her,” head coach Chris Murray said late in the season. “She’s always just motoring and moving and doing something productive. I love that about her.”

Also named Second Team All-SJBL from amongst the circuit’s 2A members were Mancos juniors Teya Yeomans and Mandi Peacock, Ridgway junior Hannah Freed, and Dolores junior Ashlyn Mikkelson. DHS freshman Taylor Hampton and Telluride sophomore Tjarn Lyons, who began the season as more of a frontcourt/wing player but ended it as THS’ steadiest point guard, were both named Honorable Mention All-League.

“She’s coming along as far as basketball IQ, things like that,” Murray had previously said. “You can’t teach hard work.”

“It’s really exciting to see — for me as a coach — that they’re starting to just really get it and click,” he stated, in a separate interview, of his team as a whole. “And they’re still a young group. I have to remind myself as I’m coaching them. The excitement for me now and into the future is seeing what they really can be.”

Mancos freshman Claire Goodwin highlighted the First Team selections and was joined by junior Quincy Morgan-Montoya in the wake of the Lady Jays’ 15-7 result, finalized by a 60-43 loss to Limon in the CHSAA Class 2A State Tournament’s opening Round of 32.

Freshman Sophia Scranton and senior Kaitlyn Winkelmann were named First Team from Ridgway (6-13 overall), as was senior Chandler Smith of Dolores (4-16). Smith was also chosen to play March 19 in the Colorado Coaches of Girls’ Sports All-State Basketball Games, and netted the winning basket — two of her eight points — as 2A-Blue clipped Red 42-40.

Fellow CCGS All-Staters Lexi Gray and Rylee Hickman, Dove Creek seniors and First Team All-SJBL picks, also represented the league more than adequately up at Grandview H.S. in Aurora. Each scored eight points in the Games’ Class 1A feature, and Hickman’s two free throws with 4.6 ticks left clinched their 1A-Blue bunch a 53-49 win over 1A-Red.

Also named First Team All-SJBL were seniors Candis Staats and Lisa Sutherland of Nucla, which finished 11-10 overall after a 42-35 loss to Eads in the 1A State Tournament’s Round of 32. Lady Mustang junior Keiran Bray earned Second Team All-League, along with DCHS juniors Kylie and Kalie Gatlin, and Dove Creek senior Trista Barnett received Honorable Mention.

Gray was named SJBL Player of the Year, and Julie Kibel was voted Coach of the Year after the Lady Bulldogs not only returned to the 1A State Tournament’s deciding Great Eight phase, but improved upon last year’s 21-3 record by finishing 23-3 after a 40-28 victory over Westminster Flatirons Academy — featuring University of the Pacific (Stockton, California; NCAA Division I, West Coast Conference) commit Kenlee Durrill — in the third-place game.