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Democrat File Photo

APRIL ACKERMANN OF Sullivan West, left, who was chosen as the Democrat MVP by the local coaches, dribbles the basketball (which is just out of the frame) and tries to elude Family School defender Cora Thomason during a game this past season.

And the All-Stars Are . . .

By Rob Potter
SULLIVAN COUNTY — April 25, 2006 – In the interest of naming a 2006 Sullivan County Democrat Girls’ Basketball All-Star Team, Democrat staff members recently contacted the varsity girls’ basketball coaches at local high schools and asked them to choose a Most Valuable Player, a five-player First Team, a five-player Second Team and a five-player Honorable Mention team.
Those coaches’ votes, plus those of Democrat staff members, determined the players who were selected for the MVP, First Team, Second Team and Honorable Mention Team.
The players who were selected for the squad are athletic, quick and intelligent. They have no problems with swishing a 3-pointer in the final seconds of a close game, grabbing a key rebound, blocking an opponent’s shot, dishing out an assist at the precise second their teammate gets open or guarding the opposing team’s best player from one end of the court to the other.
And the 2006 Sullivan County Democrat All-Stars are…
Most Valuable Player
April Ackermann • Sullivan West
A senior forward/center, Ackermann was also chosen as the MVP of the 2005 Democrat Girls’ High School Basketball All-Star Team. She started every game for the Lady Bulldogs this season and averaged a double-double of 16 points and 12 rebounds. Ackermann, who served as a team co-captain along with fellow senior Kate Fanning, led the Lady Bulldogs to two victories over rival John S. Burke Catholic High School on their way to winning the Orange County Interscholastic Athletic Association (OCIAA) Division IV championship. “She really stepped up this season,” Livingston Manor Coach Kevin Clifford said of Ackermann. “She is a very talented player.”
First Team
Kate Fanning • Sullivan West
Fanning, a senior, was the Lady Bulldogs’ most versatile player. During this past season, she spent time at the two-guard, point guard and small forward positions. An excellent defender, Fanning often guarded the opposing team’s best player. She averaged 10.4 points, 5.6 rebounds and 4.9 assists per game.
Sarah Lander • Sullivan West
Although she is only a sophomore, Lander has been a starting forward for the Lady Bulldogs the past two seasons. This season, she averaged 12.1 points and 6.5 rebounds.
Kristin Schroeder • Family School
A senior point guard, Schroeder was in the starting lineup for all of the Lady Falcons’ games this season. She was the team’s leading scorer, averaging 13 points per game. Schroeder also averaged four rebounds and two blocked shots each contest.
Heather Sherwood • Liv. Manor
A senior shooting guard, Sherwood averaged a team-best 13 points a game, along with seven rebounds and four steals. “She was a real key player for us on offense,” Manor Coach Kevin Clifford said. “She did a great job this season.” Sherwood played what was arguably her best game against Chapel Field. In that contest, she narrowly missed recording a triple-double by scoring 16 points, grabbing 10 rebounds and making nine steals.
Gabby Westfall • Eldred
A sophomore forward, Westfall played in all 19 of the Lady Yellowjackets’ games this season. She averaged nine points and 8.1 rebounds per contest. She had a season-high 28 points in a non-league game against the Fallsburg Lady Comets.
Second Team
Steph Berger • Eldred
A junior point guard, Berger averaged 8.2 points a game for the Lady Yellowjackets this season. “She did everything for us out on the court,” Eldred Coach Frank Kean said. “She led our team with 81 assists and 56 steals.”
Jessica Diaz • Liberty
Diaz, a junior forward, was a key factor when the Lady Indians recorded their only victory of the season. She went 6-of-8 (75 percent) at the free-throw line and scored a team-high 16 points in Liberty’s 37-23 win over the Fallsburg Lady Comets in a non-league game on February 23.
Erin Gilmore • Fallsburg
Gilmore, a junior forward, has been a two-year starter for the Lady Comets. During the 2005-2006 season, she averaged 12 points per game.
Liila Mack • Monticello
The junior forward was a regular in the Lady Panthers’ starting lineup. Mack averaged a double-double of 10 points and 10 rebounds a game. She also averaged 2.5 steals and two assists per contest.
Jackie Trotti • Livingston Manor
A junior guard/forward, Trotti was a regular in the Lady Wildcats’ starting lineup. She averaged eight points and six rebounds per game.
Honorable Mention
Kaylie Ackerley • Tri-Valley
Ackerley, a junior point guard, directed the Lady Bears’ offense. She knew just when to make a crisp pass to an open teammate and when she should drive to the basket herself for an easy basket.
Kanacia James • Tri-Valley
James, a junior forward, was a regular starter for T-V. In the Lady Bears’ first game of the 2005-2006 season, which was a non-league contest against the host Monticello Lady Panthers in early December, James scored a team-high seven points.
Crystal Pettway • Fallsburg
A senior forward, Pettway was a regular member of the Lady Comets’ starting five. She averaged 10 points per game this season.
Katie Portz • Livingston Manor
Portz, a senior forward, has been a three-year starter for the Lady Wildcats. She averaged five points and eight rebounds per game this season.
Ana Rivera • Monticello
A senior guard, Rivera was one of the Lady Panthers’ regular starters all season. She averaged five points, five rebounds, three assists and three steals per game.

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