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After the all star game, Ryjae Anderson and Keke Haynes will no longer be teammates.
The Roanoke Times | File 2013
Keke Haynes (left) was picked as an alternate for the all star game, but then found out she would be playing. Haynes has comitted to D-III Eastern Mennonite.Keke Haynes (left) was picked as an alternate for the all star game, but then found out she would be playing. Haynes has comitted to D-III Eastern Mennonite.
Sunday, July 7, 2013
Ryjae Anderson and Keke Haynes’ association goes back as far as preschool.
“Her mother told me that after school, I always wanted to go home with them,” Haynes said.
In later years, they both found a talent for basketball. They were on different teams then eventually played together, first for an AAU squad the year before they reached middle school.
The last of four varsity seasons as teammates at William Fleming ended this past winter. Now, they will be teammates one last time when they compete for the West in the Virginia High School Coaches Association All Star game at 6 tonight at Christopher Newport University.
To say the occasion will be one of mixed emotions for them is a little like saying the pyramids were a notable architectural achievement.
“I may cry,” Anderson said.
“It might be interesting,” Haynes said in a halting voice.
This won’t be the last basketball either of them plays, though. Anderson is committed to Division II Chowan and Haynes is bound for D-III Eastern Mennonite. Meanwhile, both of them are predictably thrilled to be counted among the elites of this year’s statewide senior class.
Haynes was first selected an all star as an alternate. A week or two later, Colonels coach Champ Hubbard gave her the word that she would be among the invitees to play.
Neither Anderson nor Haynes claims to have seen all star selection coming.
“It was like something that came out of the blue,” Anderson said.
From an outsider’s neutral perspective, the twin honors for the Fleming players was anything but shocking. The two of them have had fabulous Colonels careers. Haynes numbers, mostly at point guard, include 760 points, 361 rebounds,302 assists and 262 steals. The 5-foot-9 Anderson has the ballhandling and shooting skills — not to mention the size — to go inside or outside. She scored 1,176 points to go with 502 rebounds.
It was the second time in four years that two Fleming teammates were selected for the same all star game. Ti’Asia McGeorge and Celeste Stovall were 2010 invitees. McGeorge, a rising senior for American University’s team, played in the all star game. Stovall had another commitment.
“That’s four from our program picked for the all star game in that time,” Hubbard said. “That’s a major accomplishment.”
Additionally, during the Anderson-Haynes era, Fleming has gone 64-23, 23-9 in the Western Valley District, finished a state AAA quarterfinalist twice and a Northwest Region entry three of its four seasons.
For Anderson and Haynes, basketball statistics do not provide the full measure of their high school resumes. Anderson was a 3.0 student and both of them have been A-B honor roll throughout. Given that kind of classroom achievement, it follows that the two of them have an eye to the future. Such is the case. Both already know what they intend to major in.
Anderson is interested in graphic arts, a major factor in her picking Chowan after she chose to opt out of a Division I commitment to St. Peter’s in order to be closer to home. Haynes’ goal is to start a business that will offer fun activities for children. She’ll major in business administration.
Another final reunion at the all star game will be among the Fleming girls and West teammate Charmaine Hairston of Franklin County. The three of them have been teammates as well as rivals. They’ve been on the same travel team before.
Hairston and Haynes, both point guards, were often matched up defensively.
“Charmaine always has pressure on the ball, she has quick feet, and she’s a mind-reader,” Haynes said.
Kristen Atwell of George Wythe is the other Timesland player on the West squad.
One of the coaching challenges of all star games is taking a short amount of practice time to teach a group of strong players, who mostly don’t know each other, how to play together. As you might expect, that will not be an issue for the Fleming girls.
“I always know where Keke is; she always know where I am,” Anderson said.
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