7th Annual Sunflower Shootout All-Star Basketball Game Set


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SMITH CENTER, KS—The Smith Center Recreation Commission will be hosting the 7th Annual Sunflower Shootout all star basketball game on Saturday, March 18, at the Smith Center High School gym.

The games will feature senior all stars from the Mid-Continent League against a team of all stars from a 14-county area in North Central Kansas.

The girls game will tip off at 4:00 p.m. with the boys game set for 6:00.
There will also be 3-point contests at halftime of each game.

The Mid-Continent league girls roster includes Baylee Miller and Miah Melvin, Norton; Ashley Mattheyer, Ellis; Jenna Zimmerman, Oakley; Emily Buchholz, Trego; Emily Conyac, Stockton; Tatum Bartels, Phillipsburg; and Megan Koenigsman, Madyson Koerner and Katelyn Zimmerman, all from Thomas More Prep Marian. Coaches will be Trego’s Jerod Brown and Stockton’s Alexa Rogers.

North Central Kansas girls are Kendsey Johnson, Republic County; Kassie Bretton, Thunder Ridge; Karlee Braun, Logan; Karsyn Smith and Kaitlyn Ohlde, Linn; Riley Doebele, Hanover; Annie Otott and Jenna Hennerberg, Washington County; Jessica LaRocque, Lakeside; and Elizabeth Walter of St. John’s Beloit/Tipton. Coaches will be Kyle Fox of Palco and Randy Thayer of Pike Valley.

The Mid-Continent league boys team features Thayne Benoit, Smith Center; Landon Porter and Tyus Henson, both of Norton; Easton Smith and Derrick Pfeifer, Ellis; Hayden Friend, Plainville; Joel Green and Kiam Coffey, Stockton; Emmit Owens, Trego; and Everett Brandyberry of Hill City. Craig Wamsley, Oakley, and Brandon Maska, Ellis, will be the coaches.

The North Central Kansas boys squad includes Trey Kuhlman, Republic County; Josh Van Laeys, Logan; Dawson Miller, Washington County; Brendon Mason, Beloit; Davis Dubbert and Mason Eilert, both of St. John’s Beloit/Tipton; Michael Jueneman, Hanover; Taitem Zeigler, Natoma; Dawson Johnson, Lakeside; and Chase McGatlin, Linn. Coaches will be Jeremy Miller, Linn, and Mark Wildeman, Logan.

“We have again assembled some of the top high school basketball talent in the state for this event, and we are really excited about it,” said Mike Hughes, Smith Center Recreation Director. “There were an exceptional number of good seniors from the North Central Kansas area and it made the selections very difficult.”

“We try to make this an exciting and fun event for the players, and think the fans will enjoy the evening as well. Anyone who enjoys basketball will truly want to see this event,” Hughes added.

Admission for the event will be $6.00 for adults, $3.00 for children ages 5 to 12, and children 4 & under are free.

This event is sponsored by the Smith Center Recreation Commission.

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Derek Nester
Derek Nesterhttps://sunflowerstateradio.com
Derek Nester was born and raised in Blue Rapids and graduated from Valley Heights High School in 2000. He attended Cowley College in Arkansas City and Johnson County Community College in Overland Park studying Journalism & Media Communications. In 2002 Derek joined Taylor Communications, Inc. in Salina, Kansas working in digital media for 550 AM KFRM and 100.9 FM KCLY. Following that stop, he joined Dierking Communications, Inc. stations KNDY AM & FM as a board operator and fill-in sports play-by-play announcer. Starting in 2005 Derek joined the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network as a Studio Coordinator at 101 The Fox in Kansas City, a role he would serve for 15 years culminating in the Super Bowl LIV Championship game broadcast. In 2021 he moved to Audacy, formerly known as Entercom Communications, Inc. and 106.5 The Wolf and 610 Sports Radio, the new flagship stations of the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network, the largest radio network in the NFL. Through all of this, Derek continues to serve as the Digital Media Director for Sunflower State Radio, the digital and social media operations of Dierking Communications, Inc. and the 6 radio stations it owns and operates across Kansas.

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