Girls BB State Team of Year 2024

Four of Etiwanda’s five starters — Grace Knox, Aliyahna “Puff” Morris, Kennedy Smith and Mykelle Richards — scored all of the team’s points except six during the team’s win against Mitty. Arynn Finley was the fifth starter. Photo: Willie Eashman.

Going back-to-back as a State Team of the Year in California girls basketball history isn’t that unusual, so the biggest question in the aftermath of Etiwanda’s CIF Open Division state title game victory over Archbishop Mitty is whether the Eagles will join Mater Dei of Santa Ana next year as the only schools in state history to ever do three in a row. Etiwanda does become the first program in the Open Division era of CIF state basketball history to go back-to-back also as State Team of the Year.

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(Associate editor Harold Abend contributed to this article)

Since the CIF Open Division state playoff format began in 2013, it’s been just a formality to also add the winning team onto the all-time state list of California No. 1 teams. Before that, there was always some suspense about which team might get chosen and there had been non-Division 1 teams that were State Teams of the Year.

Still, there’s always history to explore with any CIF Open Division state champion and it has become customary for us to do that when officially adding that team — in this case Etiwanda — to the all-time state list.

Head coach Stan Delus’s squad is being added for the second straight season after capturing its second straight CIF Open Division state title last Saturday with a 60-48 triumph over Archbishop Mitty of San Jose, which came into the game unbeaten and was No. 1 in the state and national rankings.

While Sierra Canyon of Chatsworth can claim back-to-back CIF Open state titles for 2019 and 2022 since there were no CIF state championships in 2020 or 2021 due to COVID, it’s not the same for State Team of the Year. One was still picked in 2020 with no state title games held (it was La Jolla Country Day) and in 2021 (Corona Centennial) when there was that late spring season with no state finals in March.

Mater Dei of Santa Ana had a run of three straight State Team of the Year honors from 2010 to 2012 under retiring head coach Kevin Kiernan, but the CIF Open Division format began in 2013. Etiwanda therefore has become the first back-to-back State Team of the Year in the CIF Open Division era.

Mater Dei’s run of three straight State Team of the Year selections also is historical because its the only time that has happened since the first honor was determined in the early 1970s by Cal-Hi Sports founder Nelson Tennis.

Can Etiwanda make in three in a row next season and join the Monarchs? Transfers can always complicate the landscape, but despite the graduation loss of McDonald’s All-American Kennedy Smith no one would be wise to count out the Eagles.

Stellar point guard Aliyahna “Puff” Morris will be back for her senior year as will forward Grace Knox, who became a dominant player especially at the end of this season. The expected addition of perhaps the top incoming ninth grader in the nation, 6-foot-4 Sydney Douglas, who is from the Inland Empire, would also be a perfect replacement for Smith. Nothing seems official on that yet, however, other than Sydney’s father, former NFL lineman Rome Douglas, offering the correct pronunciation of Stan Delus’ name last week on X/Twitter.

Cal-Hi Sports Girls Basketball
State Teams of the Year All-Time List

2024 – Etiwanda (32-3)
2023 – Etiwanda (32-3)
2022 – Chatsworth Sierra Canyon (30-2)
2021 – Corona Centennial (25-1)
2020 – La Jolla Country Day (32-1)
2019 – Chatsworth Sierra Canyon (33-1)
2018 – Los Angeles Windward (27-3)
2017 – Fresno Clovis West (34-2)
2016 – West Hills Chaminade (31-4)
2015 – Stockton St. Mary’s (34-1)
2014 – Long Beach Poly (27-3)
2013 – Oakland Bishop O’Dowd (30-3)
2012 – Santa Ana Mater Dei (34-3)
2011 – Santa Ana Mater Dei (34-1)
2010 – Santa Ana Mater Dei (32-1)
2009 – Brea Olinda Brea (33-2)
2008 – S.F. Sacred Heart Cathedral (33-0)
2007 – Long Beach Poly (36-1)
2006 – Fullerton Troy (33-1)
2005 – Piedmont (32-2)
2004 – Piedmont (33-2)
2003 – Lynwood (32-1)
2002 – Lynwood (32-0)
2001 – Harbor City Narbonne (28-3)
2000 – Harbor City Narbonne (34-0)
1999 – San Jose Archbishop Mitty (31-0)
1998 – Harbor City Narbonne (32-1)*
1997 – Berkeley (29-3)
1996 – Irvine Woodbridge (32-2)
1995 – Irvine Woodbridge (33-1)
1994 – Brea Olinda Brea (33-0)
1993 – Lynwood (31-0)
1992 – RH Estates Peninsula (33-0)
1991 – Berkeley (30-2)
1990 – Inglewood Morningside (32-3)
1989 – Inglewood Morningside (33-1)
1988 – Fremont Oakland (28-0)**
1987 – San Diego Point Loma (34-0)
1986 – San Diego Point Loma (31-1)
1985 – Compton (26-0)
1984 – Ventura Buena (31-0)
1983 – Ventura Buena (28-4)
1982 – Riverside Poly (34-0)
1981 – Riverside Poly (29-0)
1980 – Berkeley (29-0)
1979 – Woodland Hills El Camino Real (19-0)
1978 – Huntington Beach (25-2)
1977 – Los Angeles (16-0)
1976 – Ventura (23-0)
1975 – Chula Vista Hilltop (18-0)
1974 – Berkeley (19-1)
1973 – Fresno San Joaquin Memorial (12-0)
1972 – Ventura Buena (8-0)

*Forfeit losses not included. CIF Division I state title vacated due to residency issues.
**Eleven wins forfeited due to use of ineligible player.

Mark Tennis is the co-founder and publisher of He can be reached at Don’t forget to follow Mark on the Cal-Hi Sports Twitter handle: @CalHiSports

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