Arundel's Chavonne Hammond, the Baltimore Sun's Anne Arundel County Girls Basketball Player of the Year and an All-Metro selection as a junior, has verbally committed to Division I Vanderbilt (Nashville, Tenn.) of the Southeastern Conference.
Hammond, a 5-foot-11 forward, averaged 16.9 points, 14.8 rebounds, nearly two assists and had 83 steals and 124 blocked shots in leading Arundel to the state Class 4A final last season.
She is believed to be the first female athlete from Arundel to receive a full Division I basketball scholarship.
"I loved the campus and how nice the teachers were," said Hammond, who will major in communications and pursue sports broadcasting. "Nothing was planned and everybody was natural during my visit and I loved the atmosphere."
Lee Rogers, the county and metro Coach of the Year after leading the Wildcats to an overall 25-1 (only loss to No. 1 Western, 51-33, in the 4A final) record and No. 3 ranking, announced Hammond's decision yesterday.
"I feel she made the right decision, because she felt comfortable there," said Rogers.
Vanderbilt is ranked nationally in the top five of most preseason publications, and Hammond, who will sign during the early signing period, hopes to play as a freshman. "It will be up to me," said Hammond.
Hammond, a Virginia native who played junior varsity in ninth grade in Hawaii before becoming a starter at Arundel her sophomore year, is a preseason honorable-mention All-American in Street & Smith's along with Severna Park's Jennifer Holmes.
The pair led the Anne Arundel Hurricanes to a third-place finish (out of 77 teams) this summer in the Amateur Athletic Union National Tournament.
Football remains the only Maryland Public Secondary Schools Athletic Association sport using the points system (8 for 4A; 7-3A; 6-2A; 5-1A) to qualify for postseason play.
Last fall Anne Arundel landed three teams in the 4A football playoffs -- state champion North County and quarterfinalists Arundel and Severna Park. It doesn't appear history will repeat itself.
The county will be fortunate to land two 4A teams in the field of eight. Going into this weekend, No. 5 Arundel (6-0) leads the 4A East Region with Meade (5-1), Calvert County (5-1) and Glen Burnie (4-2) still alive.
Four berths are taken by the region champions with the other four teams with the most playoff points qualifying. The West and South regions are loaded and it's likely three teams will come from at least one of those two.
Friday's 26-12 upset of then No. 13 Boys' Latin (4-2) by Northeast (2-4) featuring two touchdowns and two interceptions and nine tackles from junior back/safety Tyrone Eaton was the Eagles' first victory over a ranked team since 1988.
Led by All-Metro linebacker/running back Lenny Milliken, Northeast stunned Milford Mill, 23-3, in '88 which was the Eagles' last winning season (7-3) under 12-year head coach Bart Rader.
Milford Mill (8-3) made it to the Class 1A playoffs in 1988. Northeast also defeated 7-3 Chesapeake-BC, 30-6, that year.
Locals on ESPN
It was neat Saturday night on ESPN to see freshman defensive lineman Ronnie Green (All-Metro, Severna Park 1993) help No. 6 Tennessee (6-1) to a 41-14 romp over No. 21 Alabama (4-2). Right after, senior defensive back Jamie Cook (All-Metro Annapolis 1988 and 1989) roamed the field for BYU (2-3) in a 29-21 loss to Arizona State (3-4).