Genoa graduate Brittany Darling has joined the Express this season as a first-year freshman center.
arling, a 6’5 center, was a second-team All-Ohio pick her senior year with the Comets and was named first-team all-district for the second year in a row.
Darling's other accomplishments include becoming a three-time first-team District 7 Coaches Association selection. She is a three-time first-team All-Suburban Lakes League selection.
Darling averaged 18.8 points and 11.7 rebounds a game for the Comets, who won the SLL title last year. For her career, she averaged 16.3 points and 10.8 rebounds.
Darling finished with 1,452 career points, the second-highest total in school history. She holds school records in career rebounding (962), field goals made (618) and career blocked shots (236). She is tied for the school single-season mark for rebounds, with 268.
“I appreciated all that Brittany has done for Genoa basketball and Genoa High School,” Genoa girls coach Tom Kontak said. “Her performance over her career has really put Genoa on the map.”
The Owens women’s basketball program is led by fifth-year coach Michael Llanas. During his fourth year, Llanas led the Express to a 23-10 overall record and a second-place finish in the OCCAC (10-4 record). Owens, which was ranked No. 28 in the final NJCAA Division II poll, lost to Mott Community College in the finals of the NJCAA Region XII Championships last year. Llanas’ Assistant Coach is Stephen Perry.
“We have a great group of both first-year and returning players who really support and respect each other on and off the basketball court. Each student-athlete really knows the others’ strengthens and weaknesses, which will certainly play a key factor in our success.” Llanas said.
Llanas added, “This team has a great opportunity to be very successful and once again contend for conference championship.”
The Express have five players returning from last year’s team, including Unique Lane (Xenia) and Jeanne Bockey (Delphos St. John’s.)
In 2007-08, Lane averaged 10.4 points, 1.1 assists, 1.1 steals and led the team with 7.1 rebounds. The sophomore guard/forward also was the team leader with an 81.5 free throw percentage. Her postseason honors included OCCAC All-Conference Honorable Mention and OCCAC Academic All-Conference selection.
Bockey, a sophomore guard, averaged 9.3 points, 4.2 rebounds, 1.6 assists and 1.1 steals during the 2007-08 season. She was named to the OCCAC All-Conference Honorable Mention and OCCAC Academic All-Conference teams.
Also returning to Llanas’ squad are Josie Smith (Galloway Central Crossing), Rachelle Allen (Whitmer) and Stephanie McCord (Fayette).
Smith, a sophomore point guard, averaged 7.8 points, 4 rebounds, 2.4 assists and 1.7 steals during the season. Her postseason honors included being named Owens’ Most Improved Player award recipient and selection to the NJCAA All-Region XII Tournament Team. During the 2007-08 season,
Allen, a sophomore guard, averaged 2.9 points and 1.3 rebounds for the Express. McCord is a sophomore guard and averaged 4.9 points and 2.3 rebounds for the Express women’s basketball program last year.
Besides Darling, other first-year players to the Express women’s basketball program are point guard Kaila Corrothers (Detroit Consortium); point guard Brittany Simon (Lewisville, Texas); point guard Kelsey Perry (Willard); guard/forward Molly Boetz (Stryker); guard/forward Sarah Clark (Delphos St. John’s); guard/forward Chelsea Henry (Stryker); forward Ashley Hooker (Whitmer); and center Ceirra Moxley (East Liverpool).