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8th Grade Rose Lea8ue Championship Weekend: Maryland Belles & New Heights Victorious

03/07/2019, 1:15pm CST
By Robin Dolan & Julius Kim

The Maryland Belles were crowned 2019 champions!

Championship Game Recap: Maryland Belles vs. Team Takeover

How they got there...

Maryland Belles

The Maryland Belles defeated UPlay Canada in the quarterfinals and Philadelphia Elite in the semifinals.  

Team Takeover 

Team Takeover defeated NJ Sparks in the quarterfinals and NYC Exodus in the semifinals. 

Who wins it all? 

In the championship, Team Takeover went against the Maryland Belles in a true battle of the DMV. This one came down to the wire but due to consistent foul shooting from Kymora Johnson, the Maryland Belles pulled out the victory and won their first Rose League title. Making things difficult on the defensive end of the floor for the Maryland Belles was Team Takeover’s athletic tandem of Sanyah Jah and Quadence Samuels, who continued to use their length to close up traps and their ability to see the floor to get the ball in their point guards hands to make plays. Early on, the point guard match up between Madison McDaniel and Zakiya Stephenson lived up to the hype. Zakiya used the post presume of her team to get one on one matchups that led to points on the scoreboard. Madison continued to prove why she’s one of the best 7th grade guards in the country by playing up a year and establishing herself to be a difficult match up until the very end. Her ability to distribute and draw two defenders leads to her finding an open teammate, to shoot the ball from three or get to the rim for the traditional three point play was on full display. 

The Maryland Belles, however, had their own star 7th grader in Kendall Dudley, who plays at the top of the zone. She uses her length to cause errant passes and she was unstoppable in the transition as she scored by steals. From the start of the quarterfinal game and until the end, the entire team is involved in every play. From the bench, coaches, and the players on the floor, it’s an atmosphere that becomes contagious and it will benefit this squad in their development for years to come. Staying together and knocking down key free throws in the final minute allowed the Maryland Belles to take the championship with a final score of 50-46. 

The Final Pink Lea8ue Dozen Roses:

Kendall Dudley – Maryland Belles 

Dudley was sensational from the start of the season and all the way through to the championship. The 2024 athletic combo player can score the ball anyway you ask her to. She has a consistent mid range game, an ability to get to the rim, and is efficient from three. She’s long and laterally quick on the defensive end and it allows her to crash the boards on both sides of the floor. 

Kymora Johnson – Maryland Belles 

Players emerge in big games and Kymora Johnson did just that. Playing on a team with many strong players, Johnson stood out in her ability to stay consistent late in games. In her team’s championship match up, she hit key baskets to stop runs by Team Takeover while being consistent down the stretch to help her team seal a championship win. She’s a strong on ball defender and can finish in transition as well.

Madisen McDaniel – Team Takeover

McDaniel is one of the most impressive young point guards in the league. She did everything to lead her team this season and fought to the buzzer in their championship game against the Maryland Belles. She has a high IQ and is one of the most impressive pass first point guards. She has the ability to score using her quick first step and her strong ball handling skills allow her to get past defenders to get to the rim. She’s a consistent three-point shooter off the dribble as well. 

Sanya Jah – Team Takeover 

Long, athletic and laterally quick, Sanya Jah is one of the strongest defenders in the league due to her ability to play multiple positions on the defensive end. During this semi final match up, she had the task of defending 6-foot-5 Aaliyah DelRosario from

NYC Exodus. Jah did a great job in the post by making her catch the ball in positions difficult for her to score. She’s an athletic rebounder on both ends of the floor and can score the ball on both sides of the rim while having a consistent fifteen-foot jumper. 

Jaylin Hartman – Philadelphia Belles 

This long lanky combo prospect has improved every time we have watched her play this season. She can finish around the rim, score from the high post, and the baseline. She can shoot from the three consistently and is an accurate shot blocker. Hartman has a quick first step and displays a strong mid range elevation with her ability to get her shot off over much taller defenders. 

Jaydin Donovan – Philadelphia Belles 

One of the most athletic players in the league, Donovan continued to show her athleticism as she lead her team to a third place finish. She is able to rebound and finish put backs on the offensive end. She can score on both sides of the rim, and likes to demonstrate her athletic ability out in transition by finishing lay ups. She is laterally quick and stacks up deflections on the defensive end of the floor. 

 Angelica Velez – NYC Exodus 

The NYC point guard continued to use her strong ball handling skills as she lead her team in a quarterfinal victory. Her team fought with Team Takeover till the end but suffered a loss in the semis. She has a great change of speed and is able to get to the rim to score. Velez is beginning to demonstrate her mid range game more throughout the sessions. She’s also a strong on ball defender and demonstrates her high IQ with her passing abilities on offense. 

 Grace Sunback – NYC Exodus 

The sharpshooter continued to show off her quick release and the ability to connect from deep. In their quarterfinal victory, despite being in foul trouble, this long-range shooter went for 4 for 5 from the three-point line in limited minutes. Most of her shots she took were contested and she continues to show improvement in her consistency. 

Alexis Hess Philly – Triple Threat 

The combo guard continued to demonstrate her strong fundamental play throughout championship weekend. She has a quick handle and an explosive first step that allows her to get to the rim. She is a quick on ball defender and she is strong in the press.

Abigail Cooch – Nova 94 Feet 

Cooch is one of the hardest working players in the league and she continues to play hard in every game her club plays. She showed her consistency from deep by shooting the ball with a quick release and efficiently from both off the dribble and set. 

Zoey Brooks – NJ Sparks

Brooks is impressive as she shows a variety of ways scoring the ball. What she’s improved most in her play this championship weekend was her ability to see the floor. She found her teammates for easy looks down low while still being able to score at will.

 Alieghya Bartholomew – UPlay 

The Canadian guard continued to show her ability to score from mid range and the three. She has a high IQ and is able to disturb the ball well in transition.


New Heights was crowned 2019 champions!

Championship Game Recap: New Heights vs. Potomac Valley Classics

New Heights came away with the narrow victory of 46-44 to win their first ever MADEHoops Rose League title. 

Potomac Valley showed up by players stepping up in big moments on championship weekend. Going into the quarterfinal match up, they learned they would be without dominant post player Rachel Mutombo

The championship game started out with point guards Kaitlin Mariani (Potomac Valley) and Ariel Little (New Heights) making continuous plays to find open shooters or lay-ups for their respective clubs. Kaitlin Mariani found sharpshooters Chelsea Calkins and Mary Hollensteiner for open looks and they were both consistently knocking them down. On the other end of the floor, Ariel Little would find Marianna Lee in situations where she can score the ball when she’s isolated. Also, the combo guard did not disappoint getting to the rim at ease. Both clubs played a half court defense set in the second half looking to force bad shots for a rebound and have a chance to set up their offense on the other end of the floor. Both sides were trading baskets and this game stayed close until three seconds remained as New Heights was up one and Briana Jackson’s made free throw gave them a two-point lead. Potomac could not convert at the other end of the floor allowing New Heights to celebrate a title! 

The Final Orange Lea8ue Dozen Roses:

Marianna Lee – New Heights NYC

The crafty combo guard led New Heights throughout the road to the championships. Lee showed off her ability to get to the rim and finish against multiple defenders due to her quickness. 

Ariel Little – New Heights NYC

The point guard did a little bit of everything for the championship club. She has a high IQ and her ability to distribute the ball was on full display. She can finish at the rim when she calls her own number and is a set shooter from three. 

Chelsea Calkins – PV Classic

The combo player showed great improvements from session one to championship weekend. An efficient shooter with a quick release, Calkins can get to the rim off the drive. She rebounds well for her position and is long and laterally quick getting into the passing lane on the defensive end. 

 Kaitlin Mariani – PV Classic 

The floor general is one of the most impressive pass first point guard in any division. She has great court vision and demonstrated her ability to pass the ball 94 feet when she was pressured. Mariani can be found drawing two and finding a teammate for an easy lay up. She’s also a quick on ball defender who can snatch long rebounds and can quickly turn them into baskets in transition. 

Aryss Mackroon – Maryland Lady Tigers

Mackroon is a laterally quick combo player with great anticipation and has the ability to get to the rim. She finishes on both sides of the rim in transition and uses a quick first step in the half court setting to get to the rim. She is a consistent set shooter from threes as well. 

Amani Watts – MD Lady Tigers 

Watts is known for her ability to push the tempo off of strong defensive rebounds while looking up the floor in every play. She can finish off the low block and put backs on either side of the rim. Championship weekend wasn’t different as she did all the little things to propel her team to a third place victory. 

Maryan Eniafe – Team Durant 

This prospect continued to show her ability to turn the corner and elevate to finish mid-range jumpers. Eniafe is a force in the rebounding category on both ends of the floor. She can chase down 50-50 balls and has always tried to make the extra play getting her team to the semifinals on championship weekend. 

Tamia Washington – Team Durant 

The transitional combo player continued to show her quickness this weekend. She found ways to win loose balls and push the pace for her team to get uncontested transitional points. She improved her ability to be a consistent shooter throughout the season. Washington is one of the most athletic combo players in the league who will continue to improve. 

 Abbey Lindsey –SI Bulldogs 

The Staten Island combo guard stood out this weekend with her ability to make plays and get to the rim. Time and time again the fundamentally sound guard finished the traditional three point play or got to the rim by finishing floaters over bigger defenders. This combo player was a tough match up in transition as she caught the ball on the run and finished on both sides of the rim. 

Reagan Amberson – Mid Atlantic Magic 

Amberson is a tall long guard who showed the ability to be one of the best shooters in the division. Constantly rotating to the open spot, she went 3 for 4 in the first half allowing her team to keep pace with New Heights, who would eventually be crowned champions. Amberson also did a great job rebounding for her position. 

 Alexis Rosario-Remekle – UPlay 

Rosario-Remekle does all of the little things for her club. She rebounded on both ends of the floor and showed off her ability to finish on both sides of the rim. 

Samanatha Zoffraniei – Sisterkeepers 

The quick point guard found her way to the rim when her team needed to score. She drove well on the baseline and has the ability to finish plays herself. She also has the IQ to find the open player on the block. Zoffranniei is a quick on ball defender and a great vocal leader for the Canadian club. 

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