Over the years there have been some impressive athletes to grace the local courts, but this past decade we were truly spoiled. Here are the top girls basketball players from the 2010s:
Pentucket, Guard, 2015
The most accomplished girls basketball player in area history, Kelsi McNamara did just about everything in her storied career. The 5-foot-6 point guard led Pentucket to its first state championship as a freshman in 2012 and went on to become a three-time First Team All-CAL pick, a two-time Daily News Girls Basketball MVP, a two-time Eagle-Tribune Super Teamer and a Boston Globe and Herald All-Scholastic. Her Pentucket teams went 87-15 and 55-3 in the CAL during her four years and reached three sectional finals and two state semifinals along with the state championship. By the time she was done she had scored 1,258 career points, the most in school history and the sixth most by a girls player in area history. Went on to star at St. Joseph’s College (Maine), where she became the school’s first 2,000-point scorer (2,067 points), broke the school records in assists (621) and 3-pointers (321) and earned Second Team All-American honors as a senior. Also named First Team All-21st Century by The Eagle-Tribune.
Amesbury, Guard, 2020
A dominant athlete who could play any position on the court, Alli Napoli was right at the heart of Amesbury girls basketball’s best four-year stretch in program history. Led Amesbury to 73-18 record, three CAL Baker titles, three sectional finals appearances and a trip to the state semifinals at the TD Garden as a freshman in 2016-17. Was a three-time First Team All-CAL selection, a two-time CAL Baker MVP, a two-time Daily News MVP and a Boston Globe All-Scholastic as a senior. Averaged 14.1 points, 8.6 rebounds and 3.2 assists as a senior and finished career with 1,102 points, third most in Amesbury girls basketball history. Will go on to play Division 1 college ball at Central Connecticut State University this coming year.
Pentucket, Guard, 2013
One of the region’s all-time great winners, Coley Viselli was a foundational piece of the Pentucket girls basketball dynasty. The four-time All-CAL pick led Pentucket to a 93-12 record over her four years, including three sectional titles, two trips to the state finals and the program’s first state championship as a junior in 2012. Was also a three-time Eagle-Tribune All-Star and CAL Division 1 MVP as a senior in 2013, when she averaged 11.0 points, 6.5 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 2.9 steals per game. Finished career with 1,058 points. Went on to play Division 2 college ball at Post University.
Newburyport, Forward, 2012
A versatile scorer who impact the game in a variety of ways, Beth Castantini was among top players in the region throughout high school career. Was a three-time All-CAL selection who led Clippers to a CAL title as a junior in 2011. Averaged 15.6 points and 8.6 rebounds per game as a senior in 2012 to earn CAL Player of the Year honors. Finished career with 1,037 career points, the most by a Newburyport girls player this decade. Went on to star at UMass Dartmouth, where she was a four-year starter who helped the Corsairs to a 72-36 record while scoring just under 1,000 points. Currently assistant coach for Newburyport girls basketball.
Amesbury, Forward, 2019
A dominant frontcourt presence who could score at will against any defender, Flannery O’Connor was right at the heart of Amesbury girls basketball’s resurgence in the late 2010s. The 6-foot forward led Amesbury in scoring as a sophomore to help the Indians to a 22-2 record and an appearance in the Division 3 state semifinals at the TD Garden. Helped the Indians back to the sectional finals as a senior, gutting through painful back injury to keep Amesbury in contention against powerhouse St. Mary’s team. Won two CAL Baker titles and was a three-time All-CAL selection, a three-time Daily News All-Star, a two-time CAL Baker MVP, a two-time Daily News MVP and a Boston Herald All-Scholastic. Finished as Amesbury girls basketball’s all-time leading scorer and as the top female scorer of the decade (1,298 points) and now plays at Framingham State, where she earned Second Team All-MASCAC and Conference Rookie of the Year honors after helping lead the Rams to the program’s first conference tournament title.
Georgetown, Guard, 2013
A lights-out shooter who could take over a game in an instant, Kristin Hogan was Georgetown High’s top player of the decade. Earned CAL Division 3 MVP honors as a junior after averaging 14.7 points with 59 3-pointers. Served as a two-year captain who led Royals to the state tournament twice, picking up first round wins both years, including a 27-point outburst to beat Matignon as a senior in 2013. Finished career with 1,196 career points, the third most by a Georgetown High girls player in school history.
Amesbury, Guard, 2017
An outstanding point guard who was as talented as she was unselfish, Madison Napoli was at the heart of Amesbury girls basketball’s rise to prominence in the middle of this past decade. A four-time Daily News All-Star and two-time CAL Baker Player of the Year, Napoli was a two-year captain who helped the Indians improve from a losing team her freshman year to a 22-2 Division 3 state semifinalist as a senior in 2016-17. Nearly averaged a triple-double as a senior, averaging 9.2 points, 8.0 rebounds, 9.0 assists, 4.0 steals and 2.0 blocks per game. Sacrificed scoring numbers to help Flannery O’Connor and younger sister Alli Napoli enjoy breakout success as part of run to TD Garden. Former Amesbury girls basketball coach Matt Willis said of Napoli: “She is the most respected athlete I’ve been around from teammates, opponents, opposing coaches and students around the school.”
Pentucket, Guard, 2020
After spending first two seasons coming off the bench, Angelica Hurley broke out as a primetime player her junior year. Led the Sachems to their second state championship in 2019 after averaging a team-high 12.6 points per game. Followed that up with 14.3 points per game and an area-high 62 3-pointers as a senior this past winter, earning All-Tournament honors after leading her Sachems past Central Catholic to win the program’s first Commonwealth Motors Christmas Classic title. Was a two-time First Team All-CAL pick, two-time Daily News All-Star, two-time All-Scholastic and was named CAL Kinney and Eagle-Tribune MVP as a senior. Finished as a four-time CAL Kinney champion, three-time sectional finalist and two-time state semifinalist and scored exactly 900 career points. Will play Division 3 college ball at St. Joseph’s (Maine).
Triton, Forward, 2017
A sharpshooting forward, Tessa Lafrance led Triton girls basketball to its most successful three-year stretch of the decade. A three-time All-CAL selection and a four-time Daily News All-Star, Lafrance finished her career with 1,072 career points, becoming the fourth Triton girls player in school history to top 1,000. Led Triton to three straight tournament appearances, and as a junior in 2016 helped pull off one of the region’s most stunning tournament upsets of the decade, beating archrival Pentucket in the first round en route to a Division 2 North semifinal appearance. Averaged 15.9 points per game as a senior. Went on to play Division 3 college ball at Endicott College.
Newburyport, Forward, 2016
A dominant force in the paint and a highly regarded leader, Emily Pettigrew took a young Newburyport squad under her wing as the 2016 team’s lone senior and helped it finish 17-4 and as the No. 2 seed in the Division 2 North section. The three-time All-CAL pick fought through late-season injury and returned to score 22 points in team’s Division 2 North quarterfinal loss, topping 1,000 career points in her final high school game to finish with 1,012 for her career. Also a formidable rebounder and shot blocker who earned CAL Kinney and Daily News MVP honors in 2016.
Newburyport, Guard, 2018
Outstanding all-around athlete led Newburyport girls basketball to the state tournament three years in a row. A two-time All-CAL pick and two-time Daily News All-Star, Padellaro served as co-captain as a senior, leading the Clippers in scoring with 13.0 points per game, including 25 3-pointers. Was also a brilliant defender in soccer and went on to play Division 3 basketball at Framingham State, where she overcame a devastating knee injury as a freshman to earn a spot in the starting lineup this past winter.
Governor’s, Guard, 2019
A two-time captain and three-time team MVP, Georgetown’s Kathryn White has been one of Governor’s girls basketball’s top players in recent memory. An All-ISL and All-New England pick, White was a point guard who could drive to the hoop or knock down the three from deep. Averaged 14.1 points per game as a senior with 45 3-pointers. Coach Erin O’Connell called White one of the best on-ball defenders she’d ever coached. Now plays Division 1 college soccer at Sacred Heart.
Triton, Guard/Forward, 2011
A brilliant all-around player who led Triton girls basketball to its most recent Cape Ann League title in 2010, Jen Rock did it all for the Vikings. A three-year starter, three-time Daily News All-Star and two-time All-CAL pick, Rock earned Daily News MVP honors as a senior in 2011 after averaging 12.7 points, 6.4 rebounds, 5.5 assists and 4.3 steals per game. Capped off the season by leading Triton to its first state tournament win in more than 10 years. Went on to play Division 3 college ball at RPI, where she earned Liberty League Rookie of the Year honors.
Pentucket, Forward, 2012
Dominant force in the paint led Pentucket girls basketball to its first-ever state championship in 2012. Averaged 13.6 points, 7.0 rebounds and 4.0 steals as a senior. Was absolutely unstoppable during team’s postseason run, averaging 17.4 points, 8.0 rebounds and 4.0 steals as the Sachems blew out its opponents by an average of 21.8 points per game en route to the title. Scored 20 points in state semifinal at TD Garden and game-high 22 points in the state championship game. “Sarah single-handedly took over games,” said coach John McNamara after the championship victory. Two-time Daily News All-Star and an All-CAL pick and Eagle-Tribune Super Teamer as a senior. Went on to play Division 3 college ball at Emmanuel.
Pentucket, Forward, 2013
A unique frontcourt presence with the size and athleticism to guard virtually any position on the floor, Tess Nogueira was an essential piece of Pentucket’s first championship team. The 6-foot center was a four-year varsity player who gave the Sachems toughness, rebounding and defensive fortitude that few other teams could match. Helped win three sectional titles, reach two state finals and capture Division 3 state title in 2012. Went on to play Division 3 college ball at WPI.
In order to be considered for All-Decade recognition, an athlete must have graduated in 2011 or later and have spent at least one year playing for a Greater Newburyport area school during the 2010s. Governor’s Academy athletes are eligible if they are from a local town. Selections are based on production, awards, subsequent college and pro accomplishments and input from area coaches past and present.