INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Zionsville star Laila Hull left her mark on the school's career records.
On Monday, the 6-foot-1 senior and North Carolina recruit was rewarded with her biggest prize yet — earning the 2023 IndyStar Miss Basketball Award.
Hull received 70 votes, outpacing runner-up Rashanda Jones of South Bend Washington in voting by the state's media and coaches. Jones, a Purdue recruit, received 46 votes. Amiyah Reynolds, who is headed to Maryland, was third with 30 and Karsyn Norman, who played on Bedford North Lawrence's Class 4A state title team and is headed to Butler, was fourth with 12.
Hull is the first Miss Basketball from Zionsville and the second who intends to play at North Carolina. Stephanie Mavunga of Brownsburg, the 2013 winner, also played for the Tar Heels.
“Winning Miss Basketball has been a goal since I got into high school,” Hull told The Star. “I played with Sydney Parrish and Jayla Smith, so I was kind of close with a few (past Miss Basketball winners). It was cool to see people I knew achieve that goal and they were people in my community, too, so I was like, ‘OK, I can probably do this, too.'"
She certainly had the resume of a champion.
Hull finished her prep career with a school record 1,668 points, finished second in career rebounds (754) and third all-time in steals (227) while leading the Eaglesw to 57 wins in four seasons. Off the court, she worked with the school’s Black Student Union and volunteered locally on behalf of fundraising campaigns for breast cancer research while maintaining a weighted 3.88 GPA.
But this past season was easily her best. She immediately demonstrated a stronger perimeter game and it showed as Hull helped her team move up in the rankings with early season victories over then No. 3 Fishers and then No. 2 Bedford North Lawrence and then helped Zionsville earn the school's first Sectional 8 victory.
The postseason run ended with a loss to Hamilton Southeastern in the sectional semifinals, ending a season in which she averaged 22.4 points with a shooting percentage of 52% overall and 42% from 3-point range.
“This was my most consistent season,” she said. “I was able to do a lot for the team. My court awareness, my IQ — just everything improved, and it helped a lot this season. It’s only up from here.”