Anyone guessing that the 2020 graduation of Lourdes’ 6-feet-1 star guard Alyssa Ustby (University of North Carolina freshman) would end Rochester’s run of stellar girls basketball players, hasn’t been paying attention.
In fact, John Marshall has someone who’s getting even more recruiting attention than Ustby did. That is 6-2 junior Lilly Meister, who’s hearing from such top-10 programs as Oregon and Louisville. And Meister’s top competition this season? That will likely come from a fellow Rochester star, 6-3 Mayo senior Anna Miller. Yes, Rochester’s still got it when it comes to high school girls hoops. Here is Pat Ruff's top-10 list.
1. Lilly Meister, John Marshall
Meister is already one of the most recruited girls basketball players ever from Rochester. Schools far and wide are after the 6-feet-2, versatile junior, including top-10 ranked Oregon and Louisville, as well as Minnesota. Meister can do it all, using her strength, height, speed and touch to average 21 points and 11 rebounds per game this past season at JM. Meister shot 55 percent from the field, 39 percent on 3-pointers and 84 percent from the free throw line.
Meister is considered one of the top five junior prospects in the state, with that ranking likely to go up after having another outstanding AAU showing this summer.
2. Anna Miller, Mayo
The player that JM’s Meister says she is most challenged by each season is Mayo’s 6-feet-3 Miller. And that challenge is getting bigger as Miller’s game, as well as strength and athleticism, keeps growing. The senior is among the fastest girls in the state who stand 6-2 and above. She is also long limbed, which makes her even more of a problem for offensive players.
Miller averaged 16.6 points, 10 rebounds, 2.9 assists, 1.7 steals and 2.6 blocks last season. Like Meister, she can score on the block or stretch things past the 3-point line. Miller made a verbal commitment this summer to attend Division I Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa.
3. C.J. Adamson, Lourdes
Adamson might be the fastest basketball player in the state. She did, after all, finish second in the 200-meters in the 2019 state track and field meet. But the junior is much more than just fast on a basketball court. She is also a deft ballhandler and a smart floor leader on offense. Defensively, she is a handful, with her quick feet and hands. Adamson averaged 12.4 points, 3.8 rebounds, 3.3 assists and shot 53 percent from the field last season.
4. Katie Hurt, John Marshall
Hurt is a player who seems poised to bust out this coming season. She’s been plenty good already, having started for JM as a freshman and sophomore. But watch for her scoring to go up significantly this season and next. Hurt, who has size at 5-11 and ample athleticism, averaged 11 points, 4 assists and 4 rebounds last season. She might be JM’s strongest and fastest player.
5. Lynnsey Hady, Mayo
Hady is a pure shooter and with great range. The senior hit 61 3-pointers last year and finished with a scoring average of 11.5 points per game. Hady also has nice size, at 5-11, and is quick and mobile. Hady averaged 2.6 rebounds, 1.7 assists and 1.8 steals last year. She is an active and athletic shooting guard.
6. Jordyn Sutton, Century
The 5-11 Sutton put up terrific numbers on a team that didn’t do a lot of winning last year, but showed signs of improvement. Sutton had lots to do with the jump, often slinking her way to the basket en route to averaging 14.5 points per game. She also averaged 7.8 rebounds and 2 steals per game.
7. Sydney Elliott, Lourdes
Elliott is one of the top shooters in this group of 10, especially from beyond the arc and especially when she gets in one of those zones of hers. Elliott averaged 7.4 points per game last year. The 5-10 senior stretches defenses with her marksmanship and was lethal at crucial times last year. Elliott shot nearly 40 percent on treys. She also averaged nearly four rebounds per game.
8. Mullk Hammadelniel, Mayo
Hammadelniel, a senior, has a great burst to the basket and is a slick ballhandler. She likes to take chances with those drives, often flying through a pack of defenders. That allowed her to average 6.6 points per game last year, with some of her best showings late in the season.
9. Addison Clarey, Century
The 5-5 Clarey was already in the starting lineup last season as a sophomore. She made it clear why she was out there, taking advantage of her great speed and feel for the game. She didn’t do a lot of scoring (5 ppg.), but knew how to run the show at point guard.
10. Hannah Hanson, Mayo
Hanson gives Mayo something to look forward to with its basketball program. The sophomore showed all kinds of promise a year ago, showing off her speed and overall athleticism and shooting abilities, particularly the last one-third of the season when she got more chances. Hanson finished off the regular season with a 17-point game.