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Kali Vittallo, Sandra Ikeora share Foothill's top honor

Posted: March 10, 2014 10:57 p.m.
Updated: March 10, 2014 10:57 p.m.

Canyon senior Kali Vittallo led her team to a fifth straight Foothill League championship this season.

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Canyon and Valencia girls basketball were split right down the middle this season.

It’s only logical that the same principle would apply to the 2014 All-Foothill League selections.

Canyon senior Kali Vittallo and Valencia senior Sandra Ikeora were named co-Foothill League Players of the Year after the two teams also shared the team league title.

On one hand, there’s Vittallo, a sharp-shooting player who made the transition from shooting guard to point guard this year. As a fourth-year varsity player, she provided needed leadership to a young team.

And then there’s Ikeora, easily the toughest post player in the league and the engine of a talented Valencia squad.

“I’m definitely better than I was. I just put in time and I took basketball a lot more serious just because I was around people who were influencing me and making me better,” Ikeora said of her season, during which she scored 12.3 points and secured 9.9 rebounds per game.

After also doubling as a track and field athlete throughout high school, Ikeora made a commitment this year to shift her energy to basketball in the offseason.

It paid off for her.

“I put in a lot of hours,” she said. “I put in three times as much hours as I ever have.”

Vittallo scored 16.7 per game during league play while adding 4.2 assists and 4.1 steals per contest.

Both players were All-Foothill first-teamers last year, and both were counted on even more this season.

“The team kind of felt like I had to have their back,” Vittallo said. “It started getting easier throughout the whole entire season.”

A lot was expected of Vittallo, who was one of three seniors on a Canyon team that graduated two star players the previous year.

It was largely because of Vittallo’s big season that Canyon was able to win its fifth straight Foothill crown.

Valencia and Canyon played twice and split the season series, allowing both teams to finish 9-1 in league play.

On the All-Foothill first team, each school had two players represented.

Canyon’s first-teamers were junior Delaney McCann and senior Monica Friedl, who were joined by Valencia freshman sensation Kayla Konrad and senior teammate Paige Nealy.

Hart senior Breze Kimble and West Ranch senior Whitney Branham completed the first-team selections.

This is Branham’s third straight appearance on the first team.

Valencia had just one player on the second team, sophomore Sabrina Thompson.

For league third-place Hart, freshman Sophia Jacobsson got the second-team nod along with senior Jasmine Hayes of the fourth-place West Ranch Wildcats.

For fifth-place Golden Valley, seniors Caitlyn Zindroski Mariah Madison earned spots on the second team after leading the team to its first playoff victory in school history this season.

Saugus senior Justice Bennett completed the list of second-teamers.

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