O’Neal collects another honor

Published 9:00 am Thursday, April 20, 2023

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The best girls basketball player in Southside High School history earned another honor as HighSchoolOT.com named her to its All-State second team.

The website covers high school sports state-wide and is owned and operated by Raleigh’s Capitol Broadcasting Company. It named a first, second and third team consisting of 15 players regardless of year in school or classification.

O’Neal was part of the third team last year after making the second team as a sophomore, but moved back into the top 30 players in the state by averaging 29.3 points, 12.1 rebounds, 5.1 steals and 3.6 assists per game.

She led the Seahawks to a 25-7 record and a trip to the fourth round of the 1A state playoffs.

“Making an All-State team that is made up from players all over North Carolina and with most of them playing at bigger schools is a big accomplishment and a great honor,” said Seahawks coach Milton Ruffin.

“She set a high bar for her teammates with the way she worked and this is another example of hard work paying off. I’m proud that Southside provided the platform for her to do so well.”

O’Neal, a Fayetteville State signee, is one of nine seniors on the second team, all of whom are going on to play college basketball.

She was the state’s third leading scorer across all four classifications and finished her career as one of 13 girls players in state history with more than 2,000 points and 1,000 rebounds.

She is 18th among the state’s all-time leading scorers with 2,426 points and 28th among the top rebounders with 1,079.