By Paul Ross/Opique Photography
In 2019 girls basketball went to the next level, thanks to viral videos showcasing the incredible highlights of the country’s best and brightest. From Ohio’s Zia Cooke amazing dribbling display and lay-up, to Fran Belibi’s in game dunk on a fast break this season (Winner of 2019 McDonald’s All-American Dunk Contest).
These two helped usher in a wave of media attention into the girls basketball community that kept growing and building. We now have girls only outlets like Overtime Women’s Basketball and in Ohio the launch of 270 Girls Hoops.
This is just the beginning of the next stage in the growth and development of women’s basketball nationally and internationally. On the nation’s largest stage for High School Basketball The Buckeye State is well represented with 4 participants for the Girls Basketball Game on 03/27/2019 at 5pm from State Farm Arena in Atlanta (Live Broadcast on ESPN 2).
Before the game today we wanted to give you a little background on the talented young ladies from Ohio who will be participating in the All-Star Game from Ohio:
Name: Kierstan Bell
High School: Canton McKinley HS
College: Ohio State
The Future Buckeye comes into the game with one of the most storied careers in Ohio High School Basketball history for a Boy or Girl. The reigning three time Ms. Basketball (Tied with Lebron James) finished her career as the 4th leading scorer in Ohio Girls Basketball History with 2,883 points. She was 2019 Division 1 Player of the Year, 1st Team all Ohio Division 1, while posting season stats of 29.1 ppg, 7.7 rpg, 3.2 apg with a season record of 23-2.
Name: Zia Cooke
High School: Toledo Rogers HS
College: South Carolina
Zia Cooke is one of the most electric players in the country and amember of South Carolina’s top ranked recruiting class. She is the top female scorer in Northwest Ohio with over 2,000 points in her career. She is also a Back to Back Ohio State Champion in Division II (2018 & 2019). She was the 2019 Division II Player of the Year, 1st Team all Ohio Division II, while posting season stats of 25 ppg, 7 rpg, 6 apg with a season record of 28-2. Also Cooke is a two time gold medalist with USA Basketball (2017 FIBA Americas U16 & 2018 FIBA U17 World Cup).
Name: Jordan Horston
High School: Columbus Africentric EC
Jordan Horston was the unquestioned leader of one to the top teams in the country (#3 USA Today HS, #3 ESPN W, #4 Max Preps). With her playmaking ability and will to win (bought of the flu during Division III State Final) Horston lead Columbus Africentric to back to back Ohio Division III State titles (2018 & 2019). She is a three time Ohio State Champion in Division III (2016, 2018, 2019), the 2019 Ohio Division III Player of the Year, 1st team all Ohio Division III, while posting season stats of 19 ppg, 7 rpg, 5apg with an undefeated record of 28-0. Also Horston is a two time gold medalist with USA Basketball (2017 FIBA Americas U16 & 2018 FIBA U17 World Cup) and Member of the 2018 FIBA U17 World Cup All Star Five and 2018 FIBA U17 World Cup MVP.
Name: Sammie Puisis
High School: William Mason HS
College: Florida State
One of Ohio’s best inside out players Sammie Puisis is known for her ability to post up, take you off the dribble and to shoot the three, making her a match up nightmare for teams in ohio and for future college teams. She has lead her team to the Division I state Final Four in 2018 and a Regional Finalist in 2019. Puisis was 1st team all Ohio Division 1, while posting season stats of 19.1 ppg, 6.7 rpg, 1.3 apg with a season record of 19-6. In addition Puisis was a finalist for the USA U18 team in 2018.