He found just what the Lady Toppers needed in Anna Brooke Page, even though it took her a few years to finally don the Blue Mountain uniform.
“As I watched her play in high school I knew she was a solid player,” Driskell said. “Then she goes over to Northeast and as we watched her play there we just recruited her hard and knew she was somebody we wanted.”
Success has followed Page wherever she has gone. She was the 2010 Daily Journal Player of the Year after leading Belmont to its ninth girls hoops state championship.
Page twice earned All-State and All-Region honors while at Northeast, and now as a junior at Blue Mountain she has started for her respective team for the past seven seasons.
“I’ve enjoyed playing everywhere I’ve been,” said Page. “I’ve just really been blessed over my career and my teammates and coaches have helped me with that.”
Her first campaign as a Lady Topper hasn’t been too shabby. Individually, Page has been decorated twice as the TranSouth Conference Player of the Week and was awarded on Tuesday as the conference’s Newcomer of the Year.
“Her presence on the floor is an immediate impact,” said Driskell, the TranSouth’s Coach of the Year. “She’s always the same everyday and gives our team stability and confidence.”
That fortitude has the Lady Toppers playing their best ball since 2002 after finishing tied for second in regular season conference play.
Blue Mountain (17-11) still has a chance to play its way into the NAIA National Tournament with a strong showing in the TranSouth Tournament, which begins today at Martin Methodist.
“When it comes down to big games we always try and play our best,” Page said. “We’ve been successful and have kind of gelled as the season moved along.”
Page is averaging 18 points and six rebounds per game this season. Her play in the paint has opened up guards Jessi Hayles (14 ppg.) and Kati Prince (9 ppg.)