South Grand Prairie adds 5-star basketball phenom, will face nation’s best in California

After finishing as the Class 6A state runner-up last season, the South Grand Prairie girls basketball team may now be the favorite to win the state championship this season.

SGP has added five-star guard Taliyah Parker, a transfer from Putnam City West in Oklahoma. The 6-1 Parker is ranked as the sixth-best junior in the Nation by ESPN’s HoopGurlz.

“It’s huge. She is going to help us a bunch,” South Grand Prairie Coach Brion Raven said. “She is super athletic, she is very unselfish with the ball. She is a phenomenal passer. She has probably always had a tag as a scorer, but she can facilitate and distribute the ball. She is a great team player. And defensively, she is off the charts. She can guard 94 by 50. She is the real deal.”

Parker joins a team that will return five-star junior Adhel Tac, a 6-5 center who is ranked as the nation’s 12th-best junior. Tac was named The Dallas Morning News‘ all-area newcomer of the year last season after averaging 14.1 points, 8.8 rebounds and 1.3 blocks in her first season on the varsity, and she already has multiple Division I offers.

Tac had 21 points and 13 rebounds in a 65-41 state semifinal win over Humble Summer Creek — ranked No. 2 in the state — as SGP advanced to the first state final in program history. SGP will also return sophomore guard/forward Taylor Barnes, who averaged 9.2 points and 4.6 rebounds during a 35-5 season that ended with a 40-23 loss to DeSoto in the state championship game.

DeSoto Dynasty claims back-to-back 6A state Championships with win over South Grand Prairie

The South Grand Prairie and Duncanville girls will be heading to California this season to take part in the GEICO Texas vs. California Showdown, a two-day event Nov. 18-19 in Chatsworth, Calif. that will be broadcast on ESPN+. On the first day, SGP will play California’s La Jolla Country Day at 8 pm and Duncanville will play California’s Sierra Canyon at 10 pm, and the following day Duncanville will play La Jolla Country Day at 8 pm and SGP will play Sierra Canyon at 10 pm

“We’ve never really done a national schedule like this … just being able to play some of the top teams in the country,” Raven said. “But with Adhel, Taliyah, with Taylor Barnes, our kids deserve the opportunity to prove themselves on a national stage and play some of the top opponents from outside of Texas and ultimately get us prepared for a deep playoff run.”

Duncanville is an 11-time state Champion that finished last season ranked No. 15 nationally by ESPN and Returns TCU pledge Victoria Flores. The 5-8 guard was a first-team all-area selection and averaged 15.3 points, 5.3 rebounds, 4.2 assists and 3.1 steals for a team that reached the 6A Region II final before losing to DeSoto.

The two California schools were among the best teams in America last season, with Sierra Canyon finishing No. 4 in the national rankings and La Jolla Country Day coming in at No. 8. Sierra Canyon has two nationally ranked players — Juju Watkins (No. 2 senior) and Mackenly Randolph (No. 23 junior) — and La Jolla Country Day Returns Arizona pledges Breya Cunningham (nation’s 10th-ranked senior) and Jada Williams (nation’s 20th-ranked senior).

On Twitter: @DMNGregRiddle

Find more high school sports coverage from The Dallas Morning News here.

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