Trio honored as Kentucky High School Athletes of the Year
Times Staff Report
LOUISVILLE - As part of the Kentucky Athletic Hall of Fame (KAHF) program, three high school standout-athletes will be recognized during the hall of fame ceremony on Thursday, June 13 at Louisville’s Crowne Plaza Hotel. James Quick (Trinity High School), Rebecca Greenwell (Owensboro Catholic High School) and Makayla Epps (Marion County High School) will be honored as Kentucky high school athletes of the year.
More on each honoree follows.
Makayla Epps, Marion County High School: A four-time first-team All-State selection, Makayla Epps had an illustrious career at Marion County High School that ended with a 39-0 senior season with the Lady Knights. She led Marion County to the state’s first undefeated state championship since 1984 when Marshall County accomplished the rare feat. Epps was named a McDonald’s All-American and was named Kentucky Miss Basketball and was also honored as the state’s Gatorade Player of the Year. She was a second-team member of the USA Today All-American team. As a senior, Epps averaged 22.8 points, 4.9 assists, 4.5 rebounds and 4.1 steals per game. With a career that she started on the varsity level as a sixth grader, Epps finished as the state’s sixth all-time leading scorer with 3,321 points. She also ranked in the top 10 all-time in state history in career steals with 618 and career assists with 839.
Epps is the daughter of former University of Kentucky point guard Anthony Epps, who guided the U.K. Wildcats to the 1996 NCAA national men’s basketball championship. The All-Star Girls Report ranks Makayla Epps as the No. 15 player nationally in the Class of 2013, while she’s ranked No. 21 by Blue Star Basketball. The younger Epps has signed with Kentucky.
James Quick, Louisville Trinity High School: One of the greatest athletes in state history, James Quick became a star at Trinity High School as a freshman. He became the first freshman to start for Trinity in a football game and played the final nine games as a freshman, starting one of the greatest runs of any player in state history. Quick helped the Shamrocks to three consecutive Class 6-A state titles, including a national championship in 2011. He became the only player in state history to catch a touchdown pass in four consecutive state championship games. Quick was named Kentucky Mr. Football and was honored with the Gatorade State Player of the Year Award plus the Paul Hornung Award, which is given to the state’s top player. Quick was also named to the U.S Army All-American game where he caught the game-winning touchdown and was named MVP of the game, which included the top 80 players nationally. As a senior, Quick had 85 catches for 1,413 yard and 16 touchdowns in 12 games. He finished his career as the state’s all-time leader in receptions with 280 and was third in receiving yards (4,437) and touchdowns (57).
Quick is ranked as a top 100 prospect by the scouting services and has signed with the University of Louisville. He’s the highest-ranked player to ever sign with U of L. But it’s not just his prowess on the football field that makes Quick a star athlete. He became the first player ever in Kentucky to lead a team to a state football and basketball title when he helped the Shamrocks to the 2012 Boys’ Sweet 16 championship. He was a key player on that team, earning All-State honorable mention honors in basketball. Quick also won the 200-meter run in the Class 3-A state track and field meet four years in a row. He’s expected to also run track at U of L. Quick’s father, Rhonyia, played football at Louisville and his mother, Jennene, ran track at Middle Tennessee State.
Rebecca Greenwell, Owensboro Catholic High School: One of the top players nationally in the Class of 2013, Greenwell was named a first-team USA Today All-American after her senior season. She averaged 23.1 points, 8.9 rebounds, 3.6 assists and 3.2 steals a game at Owensboro Catholic as a senior, despite playing with a torn ligament in her right knee. Greenwell, who missed her junior season because of a knee injury, was also one of three finalists for the Naismith Girls’ High School Player of the Year award, was a McDonald’s All-American and was also named a WBCA All-American. As a senior in a game against Whitesville Trinity, Greenwell set a national record with 17 three-pointers. Greenwell led Owensboro Catholic to the Class A State Championship, and then later in the season the Lady Aces made it to the quarterfinals of the Sweet 16. Despite missing an entire season, Greenwell still finished her career with 3,306 points, which ranks seventh all-time in state history. She had 1,322 career rebounds.
Greenwell is ranked as the No. 4 player nationally by Girls Basketball Report and checks in as the No. 6 player by ESPN’s HoopGurlz. She has signed to play at Duke. She also has had success on the international stage, helping the U-16 USA National team to a gold medal in 2011 when she was named co-MVP, while also helping the U-17 team to the World Championship title in 2012.
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