Local trio combines forces in Fayetteville


By Chan Davis

OF THE COMMERCIAL STAFF

Dumas’ Shabr’an Richardson doesn’t like to compare herself to others.

Living in the shadows of 2008 Dumas graduate Whitney Hameth, Richardson’s path through high school, and beyond, are much the same, including a selection to the Arkansas High School All-Star Game in Fayetteville on Wednesday where she will join Star City’s Juquecia Chaney and Monticello’s Chelsey Rhodes on the East squad.

“I never wanted to compare myself to anyone else,” Richardson said. “It’s hard to compare to another person. But I know Whitney was the last person from Dumas to play in the All-Star game and I was kind of shocked to hear I had made it. I know she was good.”

Richardson has proven her worth just as Hameth did for the Lady Dogs as a senior in ’08 before playing four years at Ole Miss. Richardson, who signed a scholarship to play at Alabama A&M, led Dumas in points (433), rebounds (189) and blocked shots (61).

She was also chosen All-Conference, All-Region, All-State and All-State Tournament team before landing on The Commercial’s All-SEARK team.

Dumas coach Glory Slater said Richardson didn’t need comparison after proving during her prep career that she belongs in Fayetteville.

“I’m just thinking she brings something nice to the table,” Slater said. “This game will let her know what she needs to work on. She is constantly working on her game and will do whatever it takes to play well at the college level.”

After playing against Chaney and Rhodes in high school, the trio will combine forces for one final trip on the hardwood.

Chaney and Rhodes squared off twice during their senior campaigns, splitting the series 1-1. The loss to Monticello was the lone blemish on Chaney and the Lady Bulldogs’ state championship run.

Chaney, who capped an equally impressive season of accolades by being selected MVP of the Class 4A state championship game, said the rivalry between the two is over and she will enjoy teaming up with Rhodes.

“Beating them I think was better,” Chaney said. “But playing with her is an honor. It’s going to be fun.”

And while enjoyment is priority number one, Chaney expects to learn something as well.

“I think it will help a lot with my confidence when I get to college,” she said. “I know there are those that have already been there. I think this will help me understand things even better.”

And while Richardson is following the footsteps of Hameth, Rhodes is setting the standard in Monticello.

“I don’t think Monticello has ever had one in Fayetteville before,” Monticello coach Lucy Williams said. “But I know she is one of the top prospects in the state. She is dedicated and a hard worker. Her work ethic is as good as anyone can ask for.”

This will not be the final time for Chaney and Rhodes to join forces as the two have signed to play for Delta State University in the fall. The duo have been following a workout routine this summer set forth by the coaching staff since they couldn’t participate in summer leagues after putting ink to paper.

“It’s a lot of running, but I don’t have a problem with it at all,” Rhodes said. “I feel good and am ready to play. I just want to play to my potential and continue to prove that I am a dedicated hard worker and always do my best.”