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Newark's Scott garners Player of the Year

Lady Norse guard set new standards

Throughout 120 games in her illustrious varsity basketball career at Newark High School, senior point guard Meggie Scott has always conducted herself in a somewhat quiet and understated manner before any time she'd ever step on the court.

But, once she hit the hardwood, Scott turned into a 5 foot-4 inch blonde-haired dynamo, a tougher-than-nails competitor capable of breaking the will of an opponent at any instant with incredible skill, determination, and an innate drive that has few rivals.

Since she took her much heralded beginnings from Lisbon Grade School to Newark High School in 2016, Scott has been nothing less than Newark's golden hoop girl, a basketball icon surpassing former Lady Norsemen point guard greats Kelly Friestad (2004) and Lauren McNanna (2010) as arguably the finest in NHS girls history and possibly the best female hoopster of all-time in Newark lore.

Scott completed her senior season recently after compiling 471 points in 33 games for an average of 14.3 points per contest which helped put her second on the list of historic scorers at NHS with 1,494 tallies second only to Newark's all-time girl's leader Laura (Johnson) Anderson who posted 1,594 points between 2005-09.

But what was even more amazing was that Scott dished out 277 assists (8.4 avg.) as well and in the process moved into 13th place all-time in IHSA history in regards to helpers in a season throughout any classification. She now stands fourth all-time in the IHSA record book with an incredible 914 assists throughout a prep career.

Scott also swiped 3.7 steals per game, hauled down 3.6 rebounds, nailed 79 3-pointers (34 percent), and shot 83 percent from the free throw line to help her earn unanimous Little Ten All-Conference accolades for the fourth straight year as well as an Associated Press All-State Honorable Mention honor for the second year in a row.

She also garnered a prestigious Illinois Basketball Coaches Association First-Team selection as well as being awarded The Morris Herald-News Girls Basketball Player of the Year for 2019-20.

"It's an incredible honor for me to be named Player of the Year and I feel very blessed to have had the opportunity to compete against some very worthy opponents this season," Scott said. "I give a lot of credit to my teammates and my coaches because without them this wouldn't have been possible."

Already a 1,000-point scorer when her senior season began, Scott started off on fire registering 25 points three times and 24 once during her first nine games, including a 25-point effort against Plano that capped off her early stretch of excellence.

"The biggest thing for me in opening the season was getting with my trainer and finding ways to fuel my body in the best way I could," Scott said. "I started to do that and it sparked my intensity level and got me going in order to help our team."

After the 7-2 start Scott provided one of the most memorable moments in her career two games later.

At Mendota on December 14, trailing 47-45 with seconds left in overtime, Scott launched a half court bomb at the buzzer that found nothing but net and gave the Lady Norsemen a dramatic one-point victory.

"It went to overtime, they had the lead and I didn't call a timeout and just rolled with Meggie having the ball," said Newark coach and Meggie Scott's mother Barb Scott. "She had two or three girls on her at half court and she just drained it. That was pretty special for sure and considering all the great ballgames she's produced over the years, that was one of the best and certainly one of the most memorable endings."

The Lady Norsemen progressed down the line and eventually won their second consecutive LTC Tournament title with a 55-45 victory over Indian Creek in the championship, when Meggie Scott poured in 24 points along with nine assists and seven rebounds to push Newark's record to 19-6.

"To win the Little Ten Conference is always super fun and we did it for the second year in a row," Meggie Scott said. "It was a great honor again for our team and our program. I was just so proud to be a big part in bringing home another golden ball trophy as back-to-back champions."

The crowning moment of Newark's season came in the Earlville Class 1A Regional title game where Meggie Scott scored 15 as the Lady Norsemen defeated Serena once again, this time by the wide margin of 65-41 to win their fourth consecutive regional plaque.

"Four straight regionals is amazing because most teams over four years don't do that." Meggie Scott said. "Just to get that last one in my senior season was pretty special for our team and for me."

Unfortunately, Newark fell to Gardner-South Wilmington 41-40 in the Class 1A sectional semifinals at Putnam County.

But the loss didn't diminish what Meggie Scott accomplished as a senior and throughout her whole career at Newark.

"I couldn't have been more blessed being second all-time in scoring at Newark after Laura (Johnson Anderson) who I was amazed with when she played," Meggie Scott said. "Then to be fourth all-time in IHSA history for assists is something I never could've dreamed of coming out of our tiny grade school at Lisbon."

Meggie Scott will now matriculate to Wisconsin Lutheran College in Milwaukee – an NCAA Division III program – and will compete for the Warriors in 2020-21 after leaving Newark as one of the most decorated girl basketball players in school history.

"I'm very excited about the next step in my life going to college," Meggie Scott said. "I'm going to study elementary education as of right now and that's a big thing for me. But I'm also so thrilled to know I'm going to play four more years of basketball in a place I know I can make a huge impact on. After such a great high school career I know I'm not done yet."

Who could ever doubt that after all she's achieved?

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