The 2021 boys basketball season was unlike any other in The Reporter/Times Herald/Montgomery Media area.
Games didn’t start until January. Players wore masks on the court and stayed six feet away from teammates on the bench. Stands were empty aside from a handful of family members and friends.
While the COVID-19 pandemic made the boys basketball season look different, area teams still found success and won league and district championships.
Archbishop Wood won the Philadelphia Catholic League and District 12-6A championships. A one-point loss in the state final against Reading kept the Vikings from completing an undefeated season.
Archbishop Carroll represented the PCL with a District 12-4A championship and state quarterfinals appearance.
Cheltenham and Plymouth Whitemarsh each won Suburban One League championships. The Panthers went 9-1 to win the Freedom Division while the Colonials finished 9-1 atop the Liberty Division.
Abington finished second in the Liberty Division, but made a run to the District 1-6A championship game. The Ghosts entered the playoffs as the No. 14 seed before winning four games, including victories over No. 3 Plymouth Whitemarsh, No. 6 West Chester East and No. 7 Central Bucks East. Their season ended in the district final against Lower Merion.
Pope John Paul II won the Pioneer Athletic Conference championship and brought home its second straight District 1-4A title.
Phil-Mont Christian Academy won a Bicentennial Athletic League championship before winning the District 1-A title.
While these are all team accomplishments, there were plenty of outstanding individual players that deserve credit. The top players from this season are recognized as members of the 2021 The Reporter/Times Herald/Montgomery Media All-Area Teams.
Rahsool Diggins, Sr., Archbishop Wood >> The 6-foot-3 guard earned his second consecutive Philadelphia Catholic League Most Valuable Player award while leading the Vikings to their second PCL championship in program history. Diggins, a University of Connecticut commit, is Wood’s all-time leading scorer with 1,513 career points.
Marcus Randolph, Sr., Archbishop Wood >> Randolph played a key role in the Vikings historic season. In the PCL title game, the 6-foot-4 guard scored 14 of his 18 points in the second half to help Wood hold off Roman Catholic. In the state semifinals, he scored 13 of his team-high 24 points in the fourth quarter of a four-point win over Lower Merion. The Richmond commit led the Vikings in scoring with 16.6 points per game.
Jordan Longino, Sr., Germantown Academy >> Longino became Germantown Academy’s all-time leading scorer this season and finished his career with 1,763 points. The 6-foot-5 shooting guard, who’s heading to Villanova next year, averaged 21.9 points and seven rebounds per game in 2021.
Josh Jones, Sr., North Penn >> Despite only playing two years of high school basketball, Jones made his mark on the North Penn program. The Louisville soccer commit scored 734 career points and helped the Knights reach the state playoffs as a junior and led them to the District 1-6A quarterfinals as a senior. Jones averaged 21.3 points and 7.6 rebounds per game this winter.
Drew Stover, Sr., Upper Dublin >> The 6-foot-7 senior had the attention of every team Upper Dublin faced and still averaged 24.9 points and 10.6 rebounds per game. Stover’s signature performance came at the end of the regular season when he scored 43 points in a 73-67 win over North Penn to help the Cardinals secure a District 1-6A playoff spot. The Millersville commit scored his 1,000th point in February.
Rob Bell, Sr., Abington
Daeshon Shepherd, Sr., Archbishop Wood
Jaylen Stinson, Sr., Archbishop Wood
Sam Brown, Jr., La Salle
Matt Compas, Sr., Wissahickon
Anquan Hill, Sr., Archbishop Carroll
Saleem Payne, Jr., Cheltenham
Horace Simmons, Soph., La Salle
Luke Yoder, Sr., Pennridge
Luke DiCianno, Sr., Plymouth Whitemarsh
Oreck Frazier, Abington
Muneer Newton, Archbishop Wood
Justin Moore, Bishop McDevitt
Teddy Spratt, Central Bucks West
Michael McClain, Cheltenham
Steve Martin, Dock Mennonite
Jake Hsu, Germantown Academy
Casey Traina, Germantown Academy
Eric Butler, Hatboro-Horsham
Jadan Welch, Jenkintown
Jimmy Casey, Lansdale Catholic
Nix Varano, La Salle
Jack Doneker, Lower Moreland
Brett Byrne, Methacton
Cole Hargrove, Methacton
Billy Coley, North Penn
Colin Post, Pennridge
Trevor Tipton, Phil-Mont Christian
Zuri Jerman, Plymouth Whitemarsh
JP Baron, Pope John Paul II
Kevin Green, Pope John Paul II
Luke McCarthy, Pope John Paul II
Kayden Roley, Quakertown
Evan Kutzler, Souderton
Collin Bowman, Upper Merion
Jahaire Johnson, Upper Moreland
Derrik Consenza, William Tennent