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Perea accomplishes one of her goals of statewide recognition

Caranda Perea

Altoona senior Caranda Perea was named to the second team of the 2020 Pennsylvania Sports Writers Class 6A All-State Girls Basketball Team on Monday.

Perea will continue her basketball career at Division I George Washington.

“To make second-team all-state in the biggest classification in the state is a significant accomplishment for her,” Altoona coach Chris Fleegle said. “It shows all the time she puts into basketball, both during the season and specifically in the offseason, paid off. The last six games of the season into the playoffs, she was playing her best basketball. She really bought in, took control of the team and wanted them to be successful.”

Perea helped Altoona avenge two regular season losses to State College with a win in the District 6 Class 6A title game.

The Lady Lions followed that win with another in the first round of the state playoffs over Mount Lebanon in overtime before they lost to Nazareth in the second round. Perea scored her 1,000th career point in that game.

“We did flip a switch, and everything we went through with the ups and downs at the start of the year led us to peaking at the right time,” Perea said. “Everyone was doing their role perfectly. I’m very proud of how far we did go, and we all peaked at the right time.”

Perea, a 6-foot-2-inch guard-forward, averaged 15.1 points per game despite being the center of most teams’ defensive strategy during tough Mid-Penn competition.

“One of my goals I made with Coach Fleegle at the start of the season was to make an all-state team, because I didn’t make one last year,” Perea said. “I’m very ecstatic, and I’m going to call Coach Fleegle and tell him that we did it.”

State College’s Maya Bokunewicz, who will play at Division I Rice, made the first team after averaging 20.8 points per game.

Maddie Burke of Central Bucks West was selected as the 6A Player of the Year, and North Allegheny coach Spencer Stefko won the coaching honors.

The Class 5A team was also announced Monday, but no players from the Mirror’s coverage area made any of the three teams. Archbishop Wood’s Kaitlyn Orihel was the 5A Player of the Year, and Chartiers Valley’s Tim McConnell was 5A Coach of the Year.

The Class 4A and 3A girls teams will be announced today at 1 p.m., and the Class 2A and 1A teams will come out Wednesday at 1 p.m.

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