Eastern Wayne’s Nyesha Best

Eastern Wayne’s Nyesha Best dribbles during a game earlier this season. This season Best averaged 17.4 points per game and also added 2.9 rebounds, 2.3 steals, and 3.4 assists. For her efforts, Best is the 2018-19 News-Argus All-Area Girls’ Basketball Player of the Year.

Look! Up in the sky! It’s a bird. It’s a plane, no it’s Nyesha Best draining a three-pointer over your head.

Best is the 2018-2019 News-Argus All-Area Girls’ Basketball Player of the Year. The senior guard might come off as a little shy. However, on the court Best is far from shy.

“It’s a blessing to be named the player of the year,” Best said. “It’s really nice. I don’t really like all the attention I just like to play basketball. I love playing basketball because it’s something I love and it can clear my mind when I’m going through stuff.”

Best led Eastern Wayne with 17.4 points per game and also added 2.9 rebounds, 2.3 steals, and 3.4 assists.

She was voted NC Basketball Coaches Association All-District first team and made huge strides from her freshman season to her senior season.

“There are still some things I need to work on,” Best said. “I still need to improve my defense and finishing at the basket.”

Gurganus said Best played a vital role in the Warriors’ successful run the second-round of the N.C. High School Athletic Association 3-A playoffs.

“It’s been fun coaching her and her sister for these past three years,” Gurganus. “Nyesha has some things that are God-given. She doesn’t say much, and she’s laid back. She tries to do her stuff on the court. She handled the pressure very well and, she didn’t let it get to her. If other teams were trying to shut her down, she found other ways to get involved and get her teammates involved. I think she handled each situation well.

“I hope that other young talented little girls see that and want to become the next Nyesha Best. I’m proud of her.”

It was not uncommon for Best to drain more than three — sometimes four or five — three-pointers any given night, but she said she was never going out of her way to throw shots up. She just did what her team needed her to do to win.

“Before games, I get kind of nervous, but once the game starts I’m good” Best said. “I don’t feel any pressure during games.”

Best comes from a competitive background. Nyesha and her twin sister Myesha, always bring the best in each other. Upon graduating from Eastern Wayne High School, the Best twins will continue their basketball career.

“It’s good, I love playing with her,” Best said. “We’re just connected together. We always know how to find each other.”

First team

Jala Holloman (Wayne Country Day): Named a NCISAA 2-A All-State selection, since arriving to Wayne Country in 2016, Holloman has been the Chargers’ top scoring threat. She finished her high school career with over 2,000 points scored. This season the Chargers floor general scored 18.7 points, dished out 4.3 assists, collected 4.1 steals and pulled down 1.3 rebounds. The Chargers reached the NCISAA 2-A State semifinals, where the Chargers lost to eventual state champions Davidson Day School.

Barylee Butts (Rosewood): A mainstay in the Eagles lineup the past few years, the senior guard played a vital role during the Eagles’ 16-8 season and second place in the Carolina 1-A Conference. She averaged 21 points, 3,2 steals and 2.3 assists per game, and made 64 percent of her field goals. Butts finished her high school career with over 1,000 points scored.

Meredith Wooten (Princeton): With only one senior on this roster, Wooten became the Bulldogs’ top scorer this season, and the Bulldogs fashioned a 19-7 overall record and a 11-1 Carolina 1-A Conference record. The sophomore guard helped the Bulldogs claim the Carolina 1-A Conference regular season and tournament crown. Wooten’s season ended with a third-round loss East Carteret in the playoffs.

Samiya Bess (Southern Wayne): A dominate force on the basketball court this season, Bess averaged a double-double — 16.6 points, 10.4 rebounds — per game. Southern Wayne finished the season with 11-12 overall record, the Saints season ended with a loss to South Central in the East Carolina Conference 3-A/4-A semifinals. Bess also named to North Carolina Basketball Coaches’ Association All-District first team.

Second team

Tziah Kelly (Goldsboro), Myesha Best (Eastern Wayne), Lexi Jeffreys (Wayne Country Day), Hailey Woodall (Princeton), Ar’Zhane Dozier (Rosewood)

Honorable mention

Dyamond George (Goldsboro), Mary Archibald (Goldsboro), Aleesha Boyette (Goldsboro), Belinda Carson (Spring Creek), Langley Barnes (Wayne Country Day), Ja’Kea Brunson (Wayne Country Day), Abi Harrelson (Wayne Christian), Tinsley Moore (Princeton), Takiria Cummings (Princeton), Samantha Beavers (North Duplin), Abbey Thomas (C.B. Aycock), Ziomara Williams (Eastern Wayne).