The six seniors on the All-Nebraska girls and boys basketball first teams are listed on the rosters for the 18th annual Boys & Girls Clubs all-star games Friday night at Omaha Benson.
The girls play at 6 p.m., followed by the boys at 8 p.m.
In the boys game, Akol Arop of Omaha Creighton Prep and John Tonje of Omaha Central will be teammates opposite Charlie Easley of Lincoln Pius X and Baylor Scheierman of Aurora. In the girls game, Lauren West of Millard North and McKenna Sims of South Sioux City are on opposing teams.
In the boys game, ex-NBA player Eric Piatkowski and Charles Thompson of the Omaha Sports Academy will be coaching their sons, Jace Piatkowski of Elkhorn South and Chase Thompson of Omaha Westside, together. Likewise in the girls game, Todd Jakopovic will coach his daughter Payton from Elkhorn and Merritt Nelson his daughter Dacey from Oakland-Craig.
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You can see the rosters below:
Orange: Jerome Wallace, Javen Udofia, Omaha Bryan; Michael Anderson, Lincoln Southeast; Keyshawn Jenkins, Jaden Horton, Lincoln High; Cooper Prososki, Bennington; Charlie Easley, Lincoln Pius X; Thomas Faber, Prep; Jace Piatkowski, Elkhorn South; Bret Porter, Millard North; Baylor Scheierman, Aurora; Chase Thompson, Omaha Westside; Josiah Allick, Lincoln North Star; Deng Jal, Bellevue West. Coaches: Charles Thompson, Eric Piatkowski.
Blue: Fred Knotts, Bellevue East; Jake Kudron, Omaha Skutt; Ta’Vion Anderson, Kyle Hutcherson, Omaha South; Jake Rueschhoff, Millard North; Karson Gansebom, Bennington; Nico Felici, Bellevue West; Brady Danielson, York; Brandon Nissen, Omaha North; John Tonje, Omaha Central; Akol Arop, Prep; Nate Lliteras, Seward; Mayuom Buom, Lincoln Southwest. Coaches: Terrence Mackey, Abdul Muhammad, Jacqui Spikes.
Orange: Kianna Estima, Quinesha Lockett, Delani Harris, Omaha Benson; Taylor Farrell, Chaise Pfanstiel, Millard West; Lexi Kraft, Lauren West, Jayna Green, Millard North; Azaiya Trainor, Kambree Rhodes, Lincoln Northeast; Akili Felici, Bellevue West; Jaden Ferguson, Hannah Kelle, Lincoln Southwest. Coaches: James Benford, Jillian Flores.
Blue: Payton Jakopovic, Elkhorn; Ali Dieckmann, Haley Kempf, Fremont Bergan; Dacey Nelson, Oakland-Craig; Konnor Sudmann, Treynor (Iowa), Kloee Sander, Jayden Greisen, Lincoln Pius X; Sierra Kile, West Point-Beemer; McKenna Sims, South Sioux City; Kayla Luebbe, Seward; Sydney McDermott, Skutt; Snezana Serafimoska, Nebraska City. Coaches: Todd Jakopovic, Merritt Nelson.
Boys, Girls Club awards
Arop and Tonje share the Boys & Girls Clubs Class A boys players of the year award, with Quinesha Lockett of Benson and Akili Felici of Bellevue West the co-winners in Class A girls.
Easley is the Class B-C-D honoree and Sims the girls winner.
Coaches of the year are state championship winners Bruce Chubick of Omaha South boys and David Diehl of Millard North girls in Class A, and JJ Stoffel of Omaha Roncalli in B-C-D boys and Kip Colony of Omaha Skutt in B-C-D girls. Youth programs of the year are the Jewish Community Center with Johnathan Crossley and Millard South with Bryce Meyers.
A.D. NSAA awards
Shaun Brothers of Plattsmouth was recently honored as the state’s athletic director of the year by the Nebraska State Athletic Administrators Association.
District A.D.s of the year were Greg Hardin of Norris, Chad Zimmerman of Millard North, Ron Beacom of Neligh-Oakdale, Alan Frank of Adams Central, Adam Boettcher of Franklin and Andy Pope of Chadron.
Outstanding service awards went to Cindy Hennen of Lincoln Northeast, Rich Hovendick of Beatrice, Stephanie Croston of Seward, Mike Funk of Fremont, Brian Orr of Louisville, Bob Knipe of Auburn, Steve Martini and Sheila Jueden of Hartington, Mike Will of Hastings and Bruce Ring of Alma. Richard Bollen of Lincoln was the assistant A.D. of the year, and Mark Armstrong of Lincoln Southwest received the NSIAAA Award of High Distinction.
The Nebraska School Activities Association, during the boys basketball tournament, presented Outstanding Service Awards to Lynelle Fritzen of Kearney, retiring NSAA board member Alan Garey of Medicine Valley, Lincoln broadcaster Larry Puteney, retiring Wisner-Pilger Athletic Director Chuck Ross and Mike Sloup of Columbus.
Petri nets 500th win
Rick Petri of Kearney Catholic picked up his 500th girls basketball coaching victory this season.
Petri has coached 26 years, including 22 with the Stars. He has guided Kearney Catholic teams to 12 state tournament appearances and two championships.
Petri picked up the historic victory in a 63-37 win over Amherst. He became the 11th coach to reach the 500-win plateau. Petri now has 505 career victories, fifth among active coaches.
Coaches step down
Three girls basketball coaches — Jason Boyd at Kearney, Steve Bartek at Lincoln Northeast and Ron Coughlin at Platteview — have announced they’ll be stepping down.
Boyd coached the Bearcats for 13 seasons and led them to five state tournament appearances. His overall coaching record in 20 seasons was 310-207. Boys assistant Kyle Fletcher will succeed Boyd, who will be an assistant principal at the school.
Bartek coached the Rockets for nine years, compiling a 167-59 mark. The former boys basketball coach at Northeast took his girls teams to state five times.
Coughlin coached the Trojans for nine years, leading them to state three times. He finished with a career record of 150-69.
Ninemire set to return
Longtime Sandy Creek coach Russ Ninemire has been hired as the girls basketball coach at Douglas County West.
Ninemire coached the Class C-2 Cougars for 40 years and led the team to 10 state championships. He was an assistant two years ago at Omaha Marian and last year helped coach at Omaha Westside.
Douglas County West won two games last season and never has reached the state tournament.
Tvrdy moves up
Seward coach Tom Tvrdy has moved into the top 15 in career victories.
The Bluejays went 20-5 this season, giving Tvrdy a career record of 464-174. He is now 15th on the all-time list, one win ahead of retired Millard North coach Jeff Ritz.
Tvrdy recently completed his 18th season as head coach.