Kaitlyn Rodgers anticipated the pass, but waited until the last second to break on the ball.
Standing alone at the back of Wenonah’s 2-2-1 full court press, the 6-foot-2 junior sprang from the top of the key and grabbed the pass intended for an unsuspecting Talladega player on the right sideline during the AHSAA Class 5A semifinal game. Rodgers sped down court, needing only four dribbles to run past the Talladega defense.
She slid by one defender 10 feet from the basket and laid up a one-handed shot over another, but the ball bounded off the backboard. No matter. Rodgers grabbed the rebound over two defenders and put the ball in the basket.
The play typified the talent and ability of the girls AL.com Birmingham Metro Player of the Year.
“She has great anticipation skills and great knowledge of the game,” said Wenonah coach Emanuel Bell. “We won a lot of games because of our defensive pressure and our defense was keyed by Kaitlyn on the back half. They tried to skip it across the front and she was there.”
Rodgers edged Clay-Chalkville’s Kristian Hudson for the honor and is one of three Wenonah players on the team. Jayla Morrow and Alexus Dye are also among the All-Metro teams.
Rodgers started on varsity as a freshman and helped the Dragons to the 2013 Class 5A title game before falling to Faith Academy. She earned All-Tournament honors that season and also in 2014 as Wenonah won the first of two straight championships. Rodgers was named Class 5A MVP this year after Wenonah (32-3) routed Brewbaker Tech 49-29 for the title.
In two tournament games, Rodgers scored 23 points, grabbed 20 rebounds, blocked 14 shots and added nine steals. Complete article