The Canyon Athletic Association (CAA) is a scholastic league which gets overlooked. Often there are really good prospects who compete in the league, and the staff at Arizona Preps and GC3 Hoops are working hard to provide coverage to those programs. I was able to attend a solid match-up between defending CAA Division-I State Champion Ridgeline Academy Lady Eagles and talented Southern Arizona Prep Lady Volunteers.
Both teams are filled with good prospects and talent coming up. The game is one of the best I attended, as small school hoops bring great energy in a snug gymnasium. The game started out with a dynamic 5-0 run with Lady Volunteer 2025 Guard Janae Pritchett hitting a three and a layup 15 seconds into the first quarter.
The Lady Vols would utilize their size and athleticism to take a 28-13 lead. Lady Vols 6-7 Senior Center (Texas Tech signee) Achol Magot, had a double-double in the first half with 13 points and 10 rebounds. Lady Eagles Coach Marcello Santelli-Ezugwu would utilize half-time to make adjustments.
The result was the Lady Eagles igniting a barrage of threes from 2024 Point Guard Nadya Gutierrez. Behind Gutierrez’s threes, Pritchett getting into foul trouble, and key defensive stops, the Lady Eagles cut the lead to 26-39 at the end of the third. The Lady Eagles kept that momentum into the middle of the 4th quarter where they got within 6 points.
Lady Vols Coach Vince Lombardi regrouped his team and made some key substitutions by putting back Pritchett and Magot. The 1-2 punch of Pritchett and Magot would be enough to hold off the Lady Eagles 59-51. This game was one of the most exciting games I had the privilege to cover.
Here are some of the prospects who caught my eye:
Southern Arizona Prep
Janae Pritchett 5-6 2025 Combo Guard
Pritchett’s stock will continue to rise. She had a breakthrough performance, as she made a huge impact with her three-level scoring ability, facilitation, spark and energy. Pritchett is a playmaker who makes the right play at the right time, and, with only being a sophomore, she will continue to develop into a nice college prospect.
Achol Magot 6-7 2023 Center (Texas Tech signee)
Magot is my favorite center in the class of 2023 because of her size and athleticism. The Texas Tech commit is a double-double machine who possesses match-up nightmares for opposing front courts. She showed vast improvement with her low-post scoring ability. I look forward to following her career into the next level.
AJ Lual 6-5 2024 Forward
Lual’s game is still young, but she possesses tremendous upside with her size, rebounding ability and smooth mid-range shooting stroke. With more game reps, she will continue to improve and a few PAC-12 Schools are already showing interest. Her recruiting stock will rise this Spring and Summer.
Nadya Gutierrez 5-3 2024 Combo Guard
Gutierrez is a bucket. She displayed her ability to heat up like a microwave in the second half with a barrage of threes from deep. Gutierrez plays cool, calm and collected but fearless. Another solid prospect to keep on eye on this season.
Maiya Kirkland 5-7 2025 Shooting Guard
Kirkland impressed me with her maturity. She has an excellent motor and is very strong and athletic. Kirkland has a great platform to be a solid prospect in the future. College coaches keep this young lady on your radar.
Cayci Muessig 5-10 2024 Wing
Muessig is a sleeper prospect to keep an eye on as she is long and athletic with good guard skills. I liked her ability to make plays in crucial moments. An exciting prospect to monitor as her stock will also rise into the Summer.