One of the most decorated girls' high school basketball players in northwest Louisiana recently picked up another honor, this time on the national scene.
Plain Dealing basketball standout Dennisha Chambers, the 2013 Times Female Athlete of the Year, was named to the 2013 PARADE All-American team. The Grambling State University signee joins fellow GSU signee Ahlisha Henderson of Los Angeles, Calif., as members of the 40-player team. Chambers is the only Louisiana player on the girls' roster and one of just four players signing with a school that isn't part of the Bowl Championship Series.
"I found out when the Grambling CEO posted it to Facebook, and I was very excited," Chambers said. "Me and Ahlisha are going to be roommates at Grambling, so I'm glad about that, too."
A multi-talented athlete, Chambers becomes the first female high school athlete in recent memory to earn All-American honors. She averaged 38 points per game her senior season, leading the Lady Lions into the second round of the state playoffs.
"Dennisha is an extremely hard worker in everything she does and she set an example for everyone else to follow," said Lady Lions coach Sheila Bryant. "All of our teachers liked her and she was very personable with the student body. It will seem strange in the fall to start school without her around."
Few players in the area could control a basketball game like Chambers, who used her speed and quick hands to create multiple steals and layups. Bryant said her star was a team leader, while remaining humble about the accolades rolling her way.
"She was self-motivated and she'd say she was doing it for her granny," Bryant said. "She had very good parental support and was never in trouble with her teachers."
Chambers competed in several events at the Class 1A state track championships, winning the triple jump with a 37-foot, 2.5-inch leap. She was the PDHS salutatorian after compiling a 3.75 GPA during her high school career, and was awarded the Phillip Guidry Memorial Scholarship and the U.S. Army Reserve National Scholar Athlete scholarship. She led the Lady Lions to the 2011-12 Class 1A state title.
"She is certainly one of the best point guards to come through here," Bryant said. "In addition to being a very good athlete, her attitude and work ethic is what helped her become better. She is a very unselfish person and that meant so much to me. Dennisha always played hard and made the others around her better players."
Chambers was a jamboree queen, homecoming maid, football sweetheart and selected most athletic at the school.