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North’s Ellis, South’s Chamberlin net top SOC honors

On teams with breakout performers throughout their lineups, it still wasn’t difficult to see the leadership and impact provided this season by North Medford’s Landon Ellis and South Medford’s Kaili Chamberlin.

For their efforts, Ellis and Chamberlin were recently feted with the highest honors in the all-Southern Oregon Conference voting by the respective boys and girls basketball coaches.

Ellis, a 6-foot senior point guard, was named SOC boys basketball player of the year, while Chamberlin, a 5-9 guard/forward, was chosen as SOC girls basketball player of the year.

Each played integral roles in leading their teams to conference championships, with Ellis’ Black Tornado also sharing that honor with South Medford.

Ellis averaged 12.9 points, 4.1 assists, 1.9 rebounds and 1.8 steals for North Medford this past spring, guiding the Black Tornado to a 14-2 record overall.

Chamberlin was a consistent influence for a Panther girls team that went unbeaten and clinched the tournament championship in the state’s elite culmination week tournament in Portland. She averaged 16.3 points, 3.5 rebounds and 2.8 steals, often in limited minutes due to runaway wins by South Medford.

Joining Ellis on the SOC boys first team was junior teammate Trey Neff, who chipped in with 17.1 points, 4.5 rebounds, 1.7 assists and 1.5 steals per game in his breakthrough campaign.

South Medford freshman guard Jackson Weiland and junior guard Junior Sleezer were also selected to the SOC boys first team, along with Crater senior Hunter Chubb and Ashland junior Hawthorn Lapierre.

In league play, Weiland averaged 13.3 points, 3.5 assists, 3.7 rebounds and 2.6 steals per game, while Panthers teammate Sleezer missed a few games due to concussion protocols but still notched 13.3 points, 3.6 assists and 2.7 rebounds per game.

Chubb paced Crater at 17 points, eight rebounds, five assists, four blocks and two steals per game, while Lapierre lifted Ashland with 13 points, 5.5 rebounds and 1.5 blocks per game.

On the girls side, Chamberlin was joined on the SOC first team by fellow Panthers Donovyn Hunter, Toni Coleman and Emma Schmerbach.

In her first varsity season after missing last year due to a knee injury, Hunter played a big role for South Medford with 12.4 points, 3.2 rebounds and 2.4 steals per game.

Senior guards Coleman (8.5 points, 2.9 steals) and Schmerbach (7.5 points, 2.0 steals) were also critical to the success of a Panthers team that rotated in a host of players in an SOC season that saw South’s margin of victory never dip below 33 points.

Crater junior McKenzie Hirsch also earned first-team nods after averaging 11.4 points, 5.4 rebounds and 2.0 steals for the Comets, whose only league losses came against South.

Grants Pass freshman Brooke Anderson also was named to the first team after averaging 14 points, four assists, three rebounds and three steals for the Cavers.

South Medford’s James Wightman and North Medford’s Scott Plankenhorn shared SOC boys coach of the year honors after each guided their respective teams to a tie for the regular-season conference title.

Crater’s Scott Dippel was named SOC girls coach of the year.

ALL-SOC BASKETBALL

BOYS

PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Landon Ellis, Sr., North Medford.

CO-COACHES OF THE YEAR: James Wightman, South Medford, and Scott Plankenhorn, North Medford.

First Team

Landon Ellis, Sr., North Medford; Jackson Weiland, Fr., South Medford; Trey Neff, Jr., North Medford; Hunter Chubb, Sr., Crater; Junior Sleezer, Jr., South Medford; Hawthorn Lapierre, Jr., Ashland.

Second Team

Devon Malcolm, Jr., South Medford; Zach Martin, Sr., Roseburg; Bryce Dyer, Jr., North Medford; Jeremy Gaut, Sr., South Medford; Brennen Neyt, Jr., Eagle Point.

Honorable Mention

Nick Karrick, Sr., North Medford; Colton Vranes, Jr., Crater; Matt Parker, Sr., Roseburg; Jude Pannell, Sr., South Medford; Finn Hilden, Sr., Ashland; Blake Eaton, Sr., Crater; Toby Barnes, Jr., Ashland; Attreyu Pinnard, Sr., Roseburg; Brandin Ziegler, Sr., Grants Pass.

GIRLS

PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Kalli Chamberlin, Sr., South Medford.

COACH OF THE YEAR: Scott Dippel, Crater.

First Team

Kaili Chamberlin, Sr., South Medford; Donovyn Hunter, So., South Medford; McKenzie Hirsch, Jr., Crater; Toni Coleman, Sr., South Medford; Brooke Anderson, Fr., Grants Pass; Emma Schmerbach, Sr., South Medford.

Second Team

Emily Rund, Sr., Grants Pass; Sierra Logue, Jr., South Medford; Madison Dutkiewicz, Sr., Crater; Bella Stone, Sr., South Medford; Jayd Sollinger, Sr., Ashland.

Honorable Mention

Shakia Teague-Perry, Sr., South Medford; Kate Stidham, So., Crater; Sophie Mock, So., Grants Pass; Raegan Bruner, So., Grants Pass; Abigail Winslow, Fr., Crater; Kayleigh Gugliotta, Jr., Crater; Tanesha Coley, Jr., South Medford; Hailey Burcham, Sr., Eagle Point; Jazmyne Wells, Sr., North Medford.

Andy Atkinson / Mail TribuneNorth Medford's Landon Ellis against South Medford.
Andy Atkinson / Mail TribuneSouth Medford's Kaili Chamberlin against Crater.