Only one athlete a year can be the top overall prospect in his or her chosen sport. So, what are the odds of one family dinner table hosting not one but two number 1 overall prospects at the same time?
Incredibly, that's precisely what's happening in Benton Harbor, Mich. if you believe longstanding girls basketball recruiting service All Star Girls Report. According to the online, sport-specific recruiting site, two Benton Harbor (Mich.) High sisters are the top prospects in the Class of 2015 and 2016, respectively.
As first noted by the Detroit News, Benton Harbor freshman point guard Kalabrya Gondrezick is All Star Girls Report's top prospect in the Class of 2015. In her first high school season, the quicksilver guard is already living up to that hype by averaging 20.1 points, 5.8 rebounds and 5.7 assists per game. Incredibly, she's done that despite suffering injuries in a car accident (she was a passenger in the automobile that was involved) and bouncing back to get right back into action in fewer than two weeks.
What's equally notable is that her younger sister, eighth-grader Kysre, is held in equally high regard. While Kysre is considered a point guard prospect in the long term, she is currently playing at the combo guard position for her middle school's eighth grade team, where she scored 43 points in her squad's first game of the season. That's right, 43 points in a girls middle school basketball game.
"It's exciting to see that other people see the potential I have and the brightness of my future," Kysre Gondrezick told the News. "I've worked hard on my game. I'm proud of myself and Kalabrya, but we still have a lot of work to do.
"We have the same dreams and aspirations that we want to reach together. I'm anxious to go out and play high school ball. I've watched my sister play and how teams double- and triple-team her and put the press on her. They won't be able to do that next year."
There are plenty of genetic reasons that could be contributing to the sisters' budding success. Their father, Grant Gondrezick, is a former NBA player who spent a year with the Suns and one with the Clippers before an untimely drug-conspiracy case and drug addiction (according to an October 16, 1994 Philadelphia Inquirer profile and allegations in this 1987 Sports Illustrated piece) forced him from the game for more than a year. He later resurrected his career in Europe, where he played until 1998.
The sisters' mother is equally steeped in basketball lore, albeit it more local. Lisa Harvey-Gondrezick is the coach of her elder daughter's Benton Harbor squad. Harvey-Gondrezick played at Louisiana Tech, where she won a national title as part of two Techster Final Four squads.
And she herself is the daughter of legendary Benton Harbor girls basketball coach Lou Harvey, who led the school to a state title in 2009, adding to the family's legacy at the school, and in Michigan girls basketball circles at large.
While the two sisters are anxiously awaiting their chance to compete together beginning in fall 2012, their mother knows that it will take significant focus for them to both reach their near stratospheric potential.
"As a mother, I'm still taking it all in," Lisa said of her daughters' ranking. Their father is former NBA player Grant Gondrezick. "I'm so proud of them as student-athletes. They know the hardest part of being on top is staying on top. They have a lot of work ahead. Hopefully we can win a state championship."
- Benton Harbor