On some nights, the only thing that could stop Sanah Sunner from scoring during Western Athletic Conference games was her own coach.
“So many of our games were not that close, so I pulled her out in the second half,” Lathrop coach Dwayne Davis said. “She shot the ball lights-out and could have very well averaged 25 (points) a game, but she’s a team player.”
It was her overall game that helped lift Lathrop to its first-ever outright title. Sunner tops the All-WAC list as Most Valuable Player after averaging 14.9 points, 5.6 rebounds, 2.6 assists and 3.8 steals in 13 league games.
“One of her best moments was when we played Johansen,” Davis said. “They did everything they could to stop her, and she dished out 12 or 13 assists, and she was excited about that. She understands the all-around part of the game.”
Sunner is one of five total Lathrop athletes to make the All-WAC boys and girls basketball first teams. Davis is the girls Coach of the Year, and first-year Lathrop boys coach Robin Hong got the same award after also guiding the Spartans to their first outright crown.
Two of Sunner’s most memorable moments were 30-point outbursts in which she made eight 3s in each, one of them in limited action in a 69-51 WAC win over Beyer.
“She’s a good kid and good captain who worked hard,” Davis said. “She led by example, and there weren’t too many times I had to get on her for taking a night off because she was full throttle. I’m proud of her development. When it came down to voting (for MVP), it wasn’t unanimous, but I don’t think there was a comparison to her in league this year.”
Lathrop (21-7) won all 14 of its WAC games and 11 were decided by double-digit margins. Joining Sunner on the all-conference first team are third-year senior forward Alaba Olaleye and junior guard Tatiana Lowery. Olaleye contributed 8.8 points, 11.2 rebounds and 3.0 steals, and the sharpshooting Lowery added 9.9 points, 3.1 rebounds, 2.6 assists and 2.6 steals.
Junior forward Marianna Delgado (9.6 points) and freshman forward Shakara Porter (3.7 points, 8.2 rebounds) made the All-WAC second team. Dana Mandanas and Kalani Soriano earned honorable mention.
Lathrop’s two-time defending conference champion boys team went 13-1 in WAC play and 19-9 overall.
Leading them were first-team selections Ahmad Jacquet and Napoleon Reeves, both senior guards. Jacquet averaged a team-high 13.6 points to go with 4.0 rebounds in league games, while Reeves chipped in 11.1 points, 5.1 rebounds and 2.1 steals. Reeves had two of his best games in the final week of the regular season, totaling 40 points and 14 rebounds in key wins over Mountain House and Los Banos that secured sole possession of the championship.
Lathrop’s second-team selections are senior guard Camryn Hayes (9.4 points, 2.8 assists, 2.2 steals), Kameron Jones (7.4 points, 4.5 rebounds, 3.2 assists, 2.5 steals) and senior forward Elijah McCullough (6.4 points).
Raymond Carson and Quentin Bohoman received honorable mention.
Kayson Welch of Los Banos was named MVP.