Where are they Now?
Revisting the Golden Age of Girls High School Basketball
March, 2008 - Issue #41
Taylor Lilley photo courtesy of John Giustina
Taylor Lilley photo courtesy of John Giustina
Some have called the period between 2001 and 2006 the golden age of girls high school basketball in the Santa Clarita Valley. They might be right. Night after night, fans witnessed a parade of college-bound talent.

Saugus had its "twin towers" of Jessica Loring and Sheridan Arredondo. Valencia featured the relentless scoring attack of guards Kelley Tarver and Dayvionne Weathersby. Hart countered with sweet shooting Amanda Patton, all-everything guard Ashlee Trebilcock, and three-point extraordinaire, Taylor Lilley. Toward the end of the age, Canyon weighed in with a phenom of its own in guard/forward Nikki Leon. It was a basketball fan's smorgasbord. It was the best show in town.

So where are they now? With such a wealth of basketball talent channeling into the college ranks from our valley during this decade's first half, surely some of it must have made an impact. In most cases, it did ... or it is. Let's take a look at some of the decade's best.

Ashlee Trebilcock
Trebilcock was the most ballyhooed of the era's stars, and for good reason. She exploded onto the scene as a freshman in 2001 and led the Indians in scoring in each of her four years.

She carried Hart to three straight CIF-Southern Section Division 1-A title appearances, was a two-time CIF Player of the Year, and left school as the Indians' career leader in points, assists, steals and rebounds.

Trebilcock spent the first four games of her collegiate career as a UCLA Bruin, where she played 17.8 minutes a game. Then came "the transfer" to Ohio State.

Even now, Trebilcock refuses to get specific about her reasons for leaving, only that it wasn't "a good fit" and that she's "very happy where she is." That happiness is showing up in her game.
Now a junior, Trebilcock is blossoming at guard for the 15th-ranked Buckeyes. She's averaging 10.2 points a game and is second on the team in assists. More important, she's seeing consistent playing time, having started in each of OSU's first 19 games.

Kelley Tarver
Tarver was a scoring machine for Valencia. At 5-foot-8, she had the size to post defenders under the basket. But she could score from anywhere. So prolific was Tarver that she claimed the Vikings' career scoring record early into her junior season.

Now a junior at California-State University, Bakersfield, Tarver has retained her scoring touch. She leads the team in scoring with an 18.1 average to go along with 3.2 rebounds.

Taylor Lilley
By the time Lilley graduated in 2006, the sharp-shooting guard owned Hart's career three-point shooting record. In four years, she made 275-of-624 three-point attempts. Her .441 clip was the second highest percentage with at least 400 attempts in the nation.
It's two years later and little has changed. Lilley, now a sophomore at the University of Oregon, is still bombing away.

Lilley leads the Ducks with 12.6 points a game despite battling foot and leg injuries throughout her sophomore campaign. She's hitting 36 percent of her three-point shots, but that's not the only way she's getting her points.

"People don't realize she can attack the basket," says Canyon girls basketball coach Stan Delus, who coached her before high school. "She's getting into gaps, and she's still lighting it up from distance. She's fiery. When you know her heart and her determination - she's always working on her game."

Amanda Patton
Patton started all four years at Hart, terrorizing defenses with her smooth jump shot. Upon graduation, Patton took her game to Loyola Marymount, where she slowly developed into one of the WCC's most prolific offensive threats.

After struggling for playing time in her first two seasons, Patton hit her stride as a junior in 2005-06. She finished second on the team in scoring at 10.6 points per game, while breaking LMU's single-season record for three-pointers with 67. As a senior, Patton upped her scoring average to 11.4 ppg (second on team) and equaled her record with 67 threes. She was also second on the team in assists. She finished her college career with 154 three-pointers, also a school record.

Jessi Loring
At 6-foot-2 Loring patrolled the paint during her years at Saugus. It all culminated in her senior year, where she averaged 14 points and 10 rebounds. Graduation took Loring to College of the Canyons, where she grew into an offensive juggernaut in the Cougars' run-and-gun style. She was an All-Western State Conference selection in her two years, and she left COC as the team's number-three all-time scorer with 1,000 points.
Loring enjoyed similar success at Cal-State Bakersfield, where she earned All-CCAA honors in both her junior and senior seasons. As a junior, she averaged 14.3 points and six rebounds while notching a league-high 56 blocks.

In her senior season, Loring led the Runners in scoring 11 times and in rebounding 10 times. She reached double figures in scoring 24 times and scored more than 20 in nine games. She graduated as Bakersfield's all-time leading shot blocker, fourth all-time leading rebounder and fifth all-time leading scorer.

After college, Loring was signed by Slammer's Basketball Player's Agency in Bonn, Germany. In two seasons in Europe, she averaged 14.3 and 14.4 points, respectively.

Sheridan Arredondo
The 6-foot-2 Arredondo was a first team All-Foothill League selection in each of her four seasons at Saugus, where she averaged 11.1 points and 10.4 rebounds as a senior. Graduation took her to St. Mary's College, where she steadily turned herself into an inside force.

It took time. After struggling for playing time for two seasons, Arredondo cracked the lineup in 2005-06, scoring 6.9 points a game while grabbing 5.2 rebounds and blocking 1.3 shots a game. She concluded her Gael career with a flourish, averaging 11.8 points and 5.4 rebounds during conference play - second on the team. She was also second on the team in blocks with 35.
Amanda Patton - photo courtesy of Loyola Marymount University
Amanda Patton - photo courtesy of Loyola Marymount University

Dayvionne Weathersby
The 5-foot-2 Weathersby earned All-League honors in each of her four seasons at Valencia high. A high jump specialist in track, Weathersby was a rebounding force from the point guard position, despite her size.

Weathersby is now a junior at Cal-State Fullerton, where she is fifth on the team with a 5.4 ppg average. She is second on the team in assists (3.2). And yes, she is still grabbing rebounds. Her three boards a game is fourth best on the team.

Nicole Leon
Leon is the youngest of this group. Just a freshman at Cal-State Bakersfield, Leon doesn't see the court often - just 12 minutes per game. The former Canyon High scoring dynamo is averaging 2.7 points per game. But her time will come. "She's still learning the game," says Delus. "She'll probably end up being one of those players who make a tremendous impact in their junior and senior years. She'll have a solid career."

For the record, this list is far from comprehensive. There have been other college recruits in recent years. They include Canyon's Brittany Thomas (Biola) and Cheryl Stevens (Princeton), Valencia's Tamaiya Smith (Cal-State Bakersfield) and Charise Hall (Cal-State Northridge), Saugus' Ann Marie Summerhays (Idaho) and Julia Bradley (Cedarville), Hart's Joy Sterling (Albany), Tatiana Thomas (University of Oregon) and Brit Brown (BYU). There will be more to come. Everything runs in cycles... even golden ages.
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