An outstanding basketball player at a high school in Jamaica Estates has been selected to play on a national all-star team.
Danielle Patterson, a senior at The Mary Louis Academy, was chosen out of hundreds of high school student athletes to play on the 2017 McDonald’s All American Girls Team, joining the ranks of past participants such as Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant and Candace Parker. The all-star event will take place on March 29 at Chicago’s United Center.
Patterson, a forward for The Mary Louis Hilltoppers, spoke humbly about the honor at a press conference on Feb. 13 at the school. The player took time to thank her family, coaches, trainers, teammates and the entire school community for their ongoing support and encouragement.
“As a young girl playing basketball, you dream about a moment like this time and time again,” Patterson said. “And now, for it to actually come true is an extreme honor.”
Head coach JoAnn Arbitello-Pinnock, who is also a Mary Louis alumna, said that Patterson tried out for the under 18 U.S. Olympic Women’s Basketball team last summer.
“I think that’s where [the selection committee] did a large part of the viewing for the girls that were selected,” Arbitello-Pinnock said. “And also, just based on her ability to play in the games that she’s played in.”
The head coach also spoke about Patterson’s exceptional drive and character.
“Danielle is a phenomenal student athlete,” Arbitello-Pinnock said. “She works hard on and off the court. She is a great teammate. She just exemplifies what a student athlete really is, and we’re so proud of her.”
After graduation, Patterson will attend Notre Dame on a full scholarship and play for the women’s basketball team.
“Being a part of Hilltopper nation is more than I could have ever hoped for, and the experiences that I have had here will follow me into college next year,” Patterson said.
This year’s boys and girls all-star teams were selected from more than 750 nominees by the McDonald’s All American Games selection committee, which is led by Morgan Wootten, a hall-of-fame basketball coach.
“The boys and girls selected to the McDonald’s All American Games 2017 rosters represent the future of basketball,” Wootten said. “We’re excited to see their talent on display in Chicago and look forward to following their respective careers.”
The girls game begins at 5 p.m. on Wednesday, March 29, and will be televised live on ESPN2.