Posted 12 months ago
By John Axtell
Four Chadron High seniors have signed or say they are committed to signing letters of intent to play basketball in college.
Center Spencer Eliason says he has committed to D-1 North Dakota State, while Peyton Hinn and twins Ashlea and Bailea Kerr have signed with Wyoming community colleges…the Kerrs at Gillette and Hinn at Sheridan College.
North Dakota State made basketball news this past season when they swept the Summit League regular season and tournament titles, then knocked Oklahoma in the NCAA tournament en route to a school record 26 wins, but coach Saul Phillips has just left for Ohio University. His successor is his associate head coach David Richman, the man who recruited the 6-8 Eliason.
A couple inches shorter than his older brother Elliott, a 2-time Nebraska player of the year and the starting center this past season at Minnesota, Spencer was an all-state honorable mention this year, when he averaged 17.5 points and 9.6 rebounds per game. He averaged 16.8 points and 10.8 rebounds the past 2 years while shooting 67% from the floor.
Eliason says he might redshirt, but with the Bison graduating 4 players over 6-7…including their 3 leading scorers…and return just 1 at 6-8, he admits he might be playing right away.
The Gillette College women won 28 games a year ago and would have a winning record this year, but ended 7-23 after forfeiting 10 wins for using an ineligible player early in the season.
Pronghorn coach William “Bunny” Rider is familiar with Chadron High after coaching the CSC team for three years in the early 1990s, posting identical 18-9 marks his last 2 seasons, and he’s excited to get the 5-11 Kerr twins.
Ashlea Kerr was a concensus C-1 first-or-second-team All-State selection the past two years and 14.6 points and 6.1 rebounds as a 4-year starter for Chadron High. Kerr ended with 1,435 points…the 3rd-highest in northwest Nebraska history behind Alliance stars Amy Stephens and Jordan Hooper, who both went on to star with the Cornhuskers.
Bailea Kerr was a 3-year starter and averaged 8.2 points and 6.4 rebounds with 196 blocks in her career with the Lady Cardinals.
Peyton Hinn became a starter late in her freshman season and went on to finish behind only Ashlea Kerr on the Chadron High career scoring list with 1,081 points in exactly 100 games. Hinn set school career records for assists with 369 and steals with 343.
She joins a Sheridan Generals club that went 19-13 this past season, but ended the previous season #21 in the NJCAA rankings.
The Chadron girls team went 68-13 the past 3 seasons, winning at least 21 games and going to state each year while being ranked in the top 7 of Class C-1 by the Omaha World-Herald.