According to Pima assistant women’s basketball coach Chris Klassen, former Palo Verde standout Sydni Stallworth received an offer to play for Alaska Anchorage.
“Syd is one of the hardest working, dedicated, team first players I have ever coached,” Klassen said. “She leads vocally and by example on a daily basis and demands the best from herself and her teammates every day.”
At only 5-foot-3, the former Southern Arizona Player of the Year had limited options according to so-called experts who never saw her play. Stallworth scored 2,182 career points at Palo Verde. Only 13 other athletes in the history of Arizona basketball have scored more.
Stallworth moved over to Pima where she continued to shine under the direction of head coach Todd Holthaus. Stallworth earned First-Team All-American status while helping the Aztecs to a third place finish at the NJCAA Division II National Tournament.
Stallworth was named to the All-Tournament Team at Nationals and was named ACCAC Division II Player of the Year.
“The one muscle that often gets overlooked in recruiting is the size of someone’s heart! A big heart overcomes a LOT of other perceived deficiencies,” Holthaus told AllSportsTucson.com when word came down about her All-American status.
“Syd is a fierce competitor that doesn’t like to lose. When that’s your PG, good things happen with your team. It’s an individual award that’s also a compliment to the team. Icing on an incredible season!”
Stallworth played in the NJCAA National All-Star game in Niceville, Florida in July and her jersey is hanging in the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame in Knoxville.
Arizona Career Scoring Leaders: Girls (ABCA)
1 Julie Brase, Catalina Foothills (2,913) 1994-1998
2 Kayla Pedersen, Red Mountain (2,611) 2003-2007
3 Christina Wirth, Seton Catholic (2,550) 2001-2005
4 Ashley Wirtzberger, Yuma Catholic/Gila Bend (2,505) 2006-2010
5 Alexis Cortez, Tucson (2,479) 2012-2016
6 Nicole Powell, Mountain Pointe (2,478) 1996-2000
7 Olivia Snyder, Green Fields (2,382) 2009-2013
8 Alyssa Wahl, Cibola (2,366) 1999-2003
9 Wendy Woudenberg, Scottsdale Christian (2,295) 2001-2005
10 Marie Folsom, Corona del Sol (2,270) 1990-1994
11 Brooke Jackson, Mesa Mountain View (2,250) 2003-2007
12 Desirae Gonzalez, Kingman (2,242) 2012-2016
13 Dymond Simon, St. Mary’s (2,189) 2002-2006
14 Sydni Stallworth, Palo Verde (2,182) 2011-2015
15 Shawn Coder, Willcox (2,162) 1986-1990
16 Amy Showers, Camp Verde (2,161) 2001-2005
17 Sonia Bribiescas, Superior (2,109) 1984-1988
18 Paula Pyers, Santa Rita (2,082) 1980-1984
19 Theresa Wirth, Seton Catholic (2,080) 2007-2010
20 Kalie Matthes, O’Connor (2,068) 2008-2012
21 Camille Zimmerman, Tempe Prep (2,054) 2010-2014
22 Taneisha Gossett, Flowing Wells (2,043) 1990-1994
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Andy Morales was recognized by the AIA as the top high school reporter in 2014 and has been a youth, high school and college coach for over 30 years. His own children have won multiple state high school championships and were named to all-state teams. Competing in hockey, basketball, baseball and track & field in high school, his unique perspective can only be found here, on AZPreps365.com and on the pages of the Vail Voice and the Tanque Verde Voice. Contact Andy Morales at AMoralesMyTucson@yahoo.com