AURORA | A profile look at Vista PEAK Prep sophomore Denali Hughes, who is set to play for Team East in the inaugural A-Town All-Star Girls Game set for Saturday, March 18, 2017, at Cherokee Trail High School. The girls game is scheduled to begin at 3 p.m. (buy tickets in advance: bit.ly/ATOWN2017 or at the door on game day):
Courtney Oakes is Aurora Sentinel Sports Editor. Reach him at 303-750-7555 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Twitter: @aurorasports. FB: Aurora Prep Sentinel
School: Vista PEAK Prep
2016-17 averages: 11.6 points, 7.2 rebounds, 3.5 steals, 2.6 assists, 1.0 block per game
Season highlights: Coming off an 18-win season, the Vista PEAK Prep girls basketball team had a much different experience in the 2016-17 season. The Bison had to replace some key figures who had helped the young program gain some momentum in the past few seasons and coach Jim Bartok did so with a talented group of youngsters surrounding some key returners. Vista PEAK Prep (a 4A program) also joined the EMAC for the first time (which includes all 5A teams) and finished second behind Rangeview, losing to the Raiders in overtime. Sophomore Denali Hughes made a significant impact in her first season with the program after she transferred in after a strong freshman season at DSST-Green Valley Ranch. The 5-foot-9 forward displayed one of the top all-around games for Aurora players, as she led the team in scoring at 11.6 points per game (just ahead of senior DeMe Moore, who was selected to the A-Town All-Star Game, but was unable to play), while she also topped the Bison in rebounding (7.2 rpg), steals (3.5 spg), assists (2.6 apg) and blocked shots (1.0 bpg). The All-EMAC first team selection will play on Team East in the inaugural A-Town All-Star Girls Game.
Hughes vs. Aurora teams: vs. Smoky Hill (12 points, 5 assists, 5 steals); vs. Aurora Central (10 points, 6 steals); vs. Rangeview (17 points, 8 rebounds, 7 steals); vs. Gateway (18 points, 3 steals); vs. Hinkley (6 points, 5 assists, 4 rebounds)