In good company

By Rick White: CNJ managing editor

They will leave Clovis as the school’s all-time leading scorer, passer and 3-pointer shooter.

And with three wins this week at the state basketball tournament, they will win back-to-back Class 5A state titles.

Starters since they were sophomores, Brittany Blackmon, Aimee Hilburn and Tori Quintana have been the core of teams that have combined for an 83-6 record the last three seasons under head coach Miles Watters.

Blackmon is a scoring machine, pumping in points with unmatched efficiency (she shoots better than 70 percent from the field). She recently passed former Texas Tech standout Cisti Greenwalt as the school’s top scorer.

Hilburn is the commander in chief of the top-ranked Lady Wildcats, using her ballhandling skills and height (6-foot) to
create mismatches. Hilburn is the school’s all-time assist leader and third-leading scorer.

Quintana is the long-range sharpshooter, raining in more
3-pointers than anyone in school history.

THE SCORER
Brittany Blackmon
Height:
5-11
Favorite subject: French
In her CD player: Keshia Cole, “Love”
People would be surprised to know: She’s kind of shy
College she’d most like to play at: UConn
Career after basketball: French teacher
Best on-court lesson she’s learned: “You have to be disciplined and have desire.”
What she learned from basketball she can apply to life: “Being a better listener and be willing to learn.”
What gets her in trouble with Coach Watters: “I like to talk a lot in practice.”
One thing people would be surprised to learn about Coach Watters: “He tries to dance sometimes when (the players) are singing and dancing.” (and no, he’s not very good).
Basketball skill she’d most like to have:3-point shot.
Favorite basketball play: “Going up high and grabbing a pass.”

Coach says: “She doesn’t take a night or a play off. When the ball goes up, she’s going to play as hard as she can every play. She’s just relentless.”

Blackmon’s numbers
• School’s all-time leading scorer with 1,488 points before district tournament.

• Is the most accurate field goal shooter in school history at better than 70 percent for her career

• Holds the single-season scoring record of 573 points

THE PASSER
Aimee Hilburn
Height:
6-0
Favorite subject: Math
In her CD player: Destiny’s Child: Greatest hits
People would be surprised to know: She loves extreme sports
College she’d most like to play at: Texas State (she has already signed with the Division I school in San Marcos, Texas)
Career after basketball: Pharmacist
Best on-court lesson she’s learned: “Where there’s unity there’s strength
What she learned from basketball she can apply to life: “Have fun.”
What gets her in trouble with Coach Watters: “When I don’t block out.”
One thing people would be surprised to learn about Coach Watters: “He loves his dog (Boo).”
Skill she’d most like to have: “Ability to dunk.”
Favorite basketball play: “Making a great pass.”
Coach says: “She’s that rare kid that makes everybody else on her team better. We run our offense through her as much as we can … she’s a play ahead of everybody.”

Hilburn’s numbers
• All-time assists leader with 421
• Third on school’s all-time scoring list with 1,320 points
• Holds school record for best free-throw percentage in a season at 83.1 percent

THE SHOOTER
Tori Quintana
Height:
5-6
Favorite subject: Math
In her CD player: Rap mix
People would be surprised to know: She writes poetry
College she’d most like to play at: Rutgers
Career after basketball:Coaching basketball
Best on-court lesson she’s learned: “If you play defense the offense will come.”
What she learned from basketball she can apply to life: “You can’t take anything for granted.”
What gets her in trouble with Coach Watters: “Being lazy on defense.”
One thing people would be surprised to learn about Coach Watters: “He’s not as serious as he looks. He makes jokes and kids around.”
Hoop skill she’d most like to have: Quickness.
Favorite basketball play: “Breaking down a defender off the dribble.”
Coach says: “Like all good shooters, she has the ability to forget about missed shots and just thinks about making the next one…And she’s a big-game shooter.”

Quintana’s numbers
• Most 3-pointers in school history with 186
• Most 3-pointers in a season with 70
• In top three all-time in assists