2020-21 Pennsylvania Sportswriters’ All-State Team (6A Classification)
Written by: Andy Herr on Saturday, May 1st, 2021
Foreword written by Mike Drago of the Reading Eagle…
Rahsool Diggins earned All-State recognition as both a sophomore and junior, but he changed his game for his senior season at Archbishop Wood. Knowing he’d be playing point guard at the University of Connecticut he prepared himself by playing that role for the Vikings.
Diggins’ scoring went down but he grew as a player and his team got better as it recorded a perfect regular season, won the Philadelphia Catholic League and District 12 Class 6A championships, and reached the PIAA title game.
“He realized he’s going to the Big East, where he doesn’t have to do everything on his own,” said Archbishop Wood coach John Mosco. “He was able to trust his teammates. It was more about winning, and getting everybody involved.”
Diggins finished his career as the highest-scoring player in program history and fronts the Pennsylvania Sportswriters Class 6A All-State team as Player of the Year.
Diggins is joined on the first team by teammate Marcus Randolph, Moro Osumanu and Ruben Rodriguez of state champion Reading High, Devin Carney of Butler and Wilson’s Stevie Mitchell, the lone repeat pick on the first team.
Diggins was a first-team pick as a junior on the Class 5A team; Randolph was a third-team pick on the 5A team.
Wood is represented by four players across the three All-State teams, more than any other program. Daeshon Shepherd and Jaylen Stinson are second-team picks.
Reading High, which held off Archbishop Wood 58-57 in a thrilling state final, is represented by three players and Coach of the Year Rick Perez, who led his team to a 26-2 record. Daniel Alcantara is a third-team pick.
Perez was also named Coach of the Year in 2017 when his team, led by Player of the Year Lonnie Walker IV, won the inaugural Class 6A title.
Roman Catholic also has three selections.
Diggins, a 6-3 senior guard, averaged 16.4 points, 5.4 rebounds, 4.7 assists and 2.8 steals. He shot 76.4% from the free throw line and made 35 3-pointers, including four in the state game, when he scored a game-high 26 points. He finished his career with a school-record 1,513 points.
Diggins was a two-time Catholic League Player of the Year and led the Vikings to the league championship for just the second time.
Collin Gillespie, who now plays at Villanova, took Wood to its first state title and first Catholic League title in 2017. He was also the Vikings’ first Pennsylvania Player of the Year.
Diggins sought out Gillespie, who played point guard for the Vikings, before the season.
“He talked with Collin about what it takes to run a team,” Mosco said. “He was more focused on that this season. He realized his points would come down but his assists went up, and we still had a great year.”
Mitchell, a Marquette recruit, proved his self during a tough four-series against league rival Reading High as he scored 30 or more points in three of the meetings and led his team to a pair of wins. Wilson was the only team to beat Reading High.
The 6-2 senior guard averaged 25.6 points per game, the highest figure in his league in 20 years, and led his team to a 20-2 record. He scored 35 points as Wilson beat Reading for the Berks Conference title. He led his team in steals (62), 3-point shooting percentage (43.9) and rebounds (7.4).
Osumanu, a 6-6 senior center, was the foundation of a Reading defense that held Archbishop Wood 20 points below its scoring average. The West Chester recruit averaged 13.7 points and 9.4 rebounds. His inspired effort in the championship game led to 22 points on 9-of-10 shooting and a game-high 12 rebounds.
Rodriguez, a 6-1 guard and one of just two sophomores among the 18 All-State selections, led the state champs in scoring at 14.6 per game, and with 40 3-pointers. He shot 36.8 percent on 3’s and averaged a team-best 3.0 assists and 2.4 steals. As a freshman he led Muhlenberg to a District 3 Class 5A championship and two PIAA wins before transferring back to Reading.
Randolph, a 6-5 senior, averaged 16.6 points and 5.4 rebounds. His 4.7 assists per game ranked fourth in the Philadelphia Catholic League. He has committed to Richmond.
Carney, a 6-1 junior guard, averaged 30.5 points a game and led Butler to the District 7 semifinals. He averaged 21 points as a sophomore on Butler’s district championship team. The three-year starter has scored over 1,300 points. An excellent shooter with deep range, he averaged 34 points over one 10-game stretch and scored 40 or more points four times. He has offers from Duquesne, Robert Morris, St. Francis and Bryant.
Jalen Duren, a first-team pick last year, and Justice Williams, a second-team pick, both for Roman Catholic, each played this season at Montverde Academy in Florida. Karell Watkins was a second-team 6A pick last season for Chester; the school played at the 5A level this season.
Rahsool Diggins, Archbishop Wood, 6-3 senior (POY)
Devin Carney, Butler, 6-0 junior
Stevie Mitchell, Wilson, 6-2 senior
Moro Osumanu, Reading High, 6-6 senior
Marcus Randolph, Archbishop Wood, 6-5 senior
Ruben Rodriguez, Reading High, 6-1 sophomore
Khalil Farmer, Roman Catholic, 6-3 junior
Christian Fermin, Pocono Mountain West, 6-8 junior
Josh Jones, North Penn, 6-5 senior
Demetrius Lilley, Lower Merion, 6-9 junior
Daeshon Shepherd, Archbishop Wood, 6-5 senior
Jaylen Stinson, Archbishop Wood, 6-0 senior
Daniel Alcantara, Reading High, 6-6 junior
Xzayvier Brown, Roman Catholic, 6-1 sophomore
Kai Cipalla, Warwick, 6-3 senior
Daniel Skillings, Roman Catholic, 6-5 junior
Drew Stover, Upper Dublin, 6-7 senior
Eli Yofan, Fox Chapel, 6-2 junior
Coach: Rick Perez, Reading
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