2020-21 Pennsylvania Sportswriters’ All-State Team (4A Classification)
Written by: Andy Herr on Thursday, April 29th, 2021
Foreword written by Mike Gross of LNP…
It was far from a normal boys’ basketball season for Neumann-Goretti, one of Pennsylvania’s most successful programs.
The Saints, who have won nine state championships since 2009, went 4-6 with no postseason in 2020-21, thanks to a combination of pandemic-related issues and the use, acknowledged by the school, of an ineligible player.
The program still managed to produce the Class 4A state Player of the Year, according to voting for the Pennsylvania Sportswriters’ all-state team, thanks to the superb season put together by senior guard Hysier Miller.
Miller, a 6-2 senior bound for Temple University, averaged 18.4 points per game on 63 percent shooting from the field and 42 percent from the three-point arc. He averaged 6.4 assets per game with a 3.22 assist-to-turnover ratio. He also led the powerful Philadelphia Catholic League in rebounding – as a point guard – with 10 boards per game.
The state 4A champion is Allentown Central Catholic, which won a tight, tense final over Hickory, and placed two juniors, 6-6 Liam Joyce and point guard Tyson Thomas, on the all-state first team.
The Vikings were cruising along early in the state final when Joyce, a constant low-post presence, had to leave for foul trouble. He finished with 18 points and nine rebounds, in line with his averages of 16.3 and 11.
Thomas averaged 15.5 points and 6.5 assists, and was at his best in the biggest moments. He scored the game-winning basket in the state final, assisted on a game-winning three-pointer in a semifinal defeat of Middletown, and scored 26 as the Vikings took out Archbishop Carroll in the quarterfinals.
The Vikings’ coach, Dennis Csencsits, was named 4A coach of the year.
Archbishop Carroll won the District 12 championship behind first-team Anquan Hill, a 6-8 senior who averaged 17.4 points, 9.4 rebounds and 2.2 blocked shots. Hill has scholarship offers from Bowling Green, Mount St. Mary’s and Bryant.
Hill’s teammate, freshman guard Moses Hipps, made the third team.
State finalist Hickory placed senior Peyton Mele on the first team and senior Connor Evans on the second.
Mele, a 6-3 swingman, made the third team a year ago, and sparked a surprise postseason run this winter. He averaged 18.3 points per game, and scored 38 of his team’s 68 in a defeat of Lincoln Park in the state semifinals.
Evans is something of a Renaissance Man. He averaged 15 points and 10 rebounds for the state finalists, and starred on the golf and baseball team, and has a 4.0 grade-point average. He’ll play baseball at Chestnut Hill College.
The final first-teamer, 6-4 junior Trey Martin of Boiling Springs, has emerged as a Division One recruit from a relatively unheralded program.
He averaged 22.6 points and 6.6 rebounds.
Hysier Miller, 6-2 Sr., Neumann-Goretti (POY)
Peyton Mele, 6-3 Sr., Hickory
Anquan Hill, 6-8 Sr., Archbishop Carroll
Liam Joyce, 6-6 Jr., Allentown Central Catholic
Tyson Thomas, 6-1 Jr., Allentown Central Catholic
Trey Martin, 6-4 Jr., Boiling Springs
Andrew Ammerman, 6-7 Sr., North Catholic
Braden Bohannon, 5-11 Sr., Elco
Adou Thiero, 6-2 Jr., Quaker Valley
Connor Evans, 6-5 Sr., Hickory
Dakari Bradford, 6-5 Sr., Lincoln Park (tie)
Moses Hipps, 6-3 Fr., Archbishop Carroll (tie)
Damon Gripp, 6-3 Sr., Tyrone
Devin Whitlock, 5-9 Jr., Belle Vernon
Jayden Weishaar, 6-0 Sr., Littlestown
Alex Walinski, 6-4 Sr., New Hope-Solebury
Michael Brooks, 6-0 Sr., Grove City
Coach: Dennis Csencsits, Allentown Central Catholic
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