Hot Shots: Standout Utah high school athletes
As Utah high schools continue to grow at a rapid pace, so does the talent level of the student-athletes. Because of this, Utah has become one of the most visited western states among college coaches looking to fill their rosters, second only to California. In each of our issues, Winners Utah will look to highlight the accomplishments of those student-athletes, as they give everything they can to lead their teams to glory. This issue’s honorees share no shortage of accolades, as some are considered the very best in the nation at what they do.
By Mikey Saltas
West High School, Salt Lake City
Track & Field, Softball, Basketball
A three-sport athlete, West High School’s Brianna White excels in track and field, softball and basketball for the Panthers. As a freshman on the softball diamond, she hit .480 and has tallied 39 hits, 29 RBIs and 37 runs in her career. On the basketball court last season, White was named First Team All-State with a stellar 20.4 points per game. A fierce competitor, look for Brianna White to make headlines yet again during her senior year.
Olympus High School, Holladay
The starting point guard for Olympus High School, Rylan Jones established himself early as a threat on the hardwood by averaging 19.7 points and 4 assists per game. Don’t let his frame fool you—Jones is listed at 6-feet, 160 pounds—the wiry athlete is a silkysmooth shooter and able passer. His performance earned him a four-star ranking by recruiting services and he is considered one of the top point guards in the nation. Jones has committed to play for the University of Utah in 2019.
Winter Sports School, Park City
The Winter Sports School in Park City has seen its fair share of student-athletes succeed on the national and global scale. Perhaps the next in line is Stephen Schumann, a senior Nordic Combined athlete at the Winter Sports School and the youngest U.S. athlete to be named to the World Cup team at the age of 15. With Olympic Trials qualifiers occurring in late 2017, Stephen has a shot of qualifying for the upcoming Olympic Games in South Korea.
Wasatch Academy, Mount Pleasant
To conclude his high school basketball career, Las Vegas native, Bryan Penn-Johnson, transferred to Wasatch Academy in Mount Pleasant. At over 7 feet tall, Penn-Johnson has garnered attention and scholarship offers from college basketball programs all across the nation, though the center has narrowed down his choices to UCLA, Washington and DePaul. Wherever he ends up, a program will be getting a versatile scorer and lock-down defender.
Box Elder High School, Brigham City
A senior at Box Elder High School, Brock Hardy is considered one of the top high school wrestlers in the United States, let alone in Utah. A three-time Utah State Champion (with a chance for a fourth title in January’s state competition), Hardy has earned the honor of National All-American. The 152-pound wrestler has committed to compete and further his education at the University of Nebraska.
Morgan High School, Morgan
This school in beautiful Morgan Valley is home to volleyball standout Marcie Stapely. The middle blocker is a key cog for the Trojans, who have won the Utah 3A State Championship three years in a row. In the 2017 playoffs, Morgan didn’t lose a single set on their way to the 2017 state title, in which they beat North Sanpete 3-0. Stapely led the state all year with an outstanding .422 hitting percentage and 379 kills.