OSAWATOMIE — Senior Amiah Simmons helped take the Lady Trojans on a historic trip to the Class 3A state quarterfinals this season.
Simmons scored an Osawatomie school-record 52 points in a 78-56 victory against Anderson County in the substate championship game at Wellsville on Saturday, March 6.
She averaged 43 points in the substate tournament. Osawatomie defeated Perry-Lecompton by a final of 92-56 in the semifinals Thursday, March 4, setting a school record for points in a game. Simmons scored 44 points.
Osawatomie opened the substate tournament with an 87-42 victory against Prairie View. Amiah Simmons led the way with 33 points.
The Osawatomie Lady Trojans averaged 85.6 points per game in the substate tournament, setting a school record for points in a substate and also a school record for points in a three-game stretch.
Simmons was named the Tri-County Spotlight Girls Basketball Player of the Year.
“I am so grateful to win this award,” Simmons said. “Mental toughness, winning attitude, determination and dedication are the things that acquired our success this season.
“I am so thankful for the community being so positive and supporting us,” she said. “Even with COVID-19, the crowds were loud and exciting.”
Simmons is one of those once-in-a-generation players, Lady Trojans coach Beau Gadwood said. She helped change the culture of Osawatomie girls basketball.
“Amiah Simmons is an irreplaceable dynamic basketball player who has all the tools,” Gadwood said. “What she did this season for this team and town was just what we needed to jump start this program and get it headed in the right direction.
“Amiah, along with the other seniors — Allie LaGasse, Madie Ballou and Kylee Barnett, did a fantastic job in leading this team on and off the court,” he said. “They really took pride in leading the team. It was their leadership on and off the court that took this program as far as it did this year. There will be a time years down the road where we will talk about the Lady Trojan basketball program and when the turnaround started, and those four seniors’ names will be spoken.”
Simmons said the team had great support from its coaches and the administration.
“We had great coaches,” Simmons said. “Coach Gadwood is really helping to turn the program around. Thank you to Wade Welch (athletic director) for everything he does for us.
“This was an awesome season,” she said. “I would not want to spend my senior year of basketball any other way.”
Simmons averaged 33 points per game. She shot 47 percent from the floor.
Simmons also added five rebounds and five assists per game.
She was a first-team Spotlight selection and a first-team All-Pioneer League selection.
Simmons led Class 3A in scoring with her 33 points per game. She was ranked in the top 10 in the country in scoring.