Springfield’s Perdue named Clark County Miss Basketball

Mickayla Perdue has made a lot of career decisions for a teenager. Should she stay, or should she go? The answer to both questions was yes.

Perdue burst on the Springfield basketball scene as a freshman in 2017-18 and has averaged 21 points a game since. Division I prospects in unsuccessful programs often have opportunities to play elsewhere, but Perdue didn’t want to. Her Springfield Wildcats averaged 8.6 wins in her three seasons and won only two conference games. In what became her senior season, the Wildcats finished 6-16 and 0-13 in the GWOC.

Nonetheless, Perdue leaves a legacy for the up-and-comers to aim for. She is the winner of this year’s Pam Evans Smith Miss Basketball award voted on by Clark County coaches. It’s her third selection to the all-county team.

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“When you grow up in Springfield, these are the awards you grow up seeing other great players get,” said Wildcats first-year coach Kawambee Gaines. “I’m glad she’s getting to finish off with an accomplishment she deserves.”

Perdue leaves Springfield as its career scoring leader with 1,482 points, the most 3-pointers with 165 and the single-game scoring record of 46 set this year.

“I definitely am glad I stayed here for three years because I kind of built something to where other girls are looking up to me, or they’re like, ‘If Mickey did all this stuff, I can do the same thing,’” she said.

Perdue’s other motivation was simple: She wanted to play with her friends.

“I didn’t know how much it meant to her to be at Springfield High and be with her friends,” Gaines said. “The pressure of winning is for all of us, but you should have joy in playing the game that you love to play. This year she got to play with some joy, so I was happy for her.”

»LOOKING BACK: Perdue commits to Toledo

Joining Perdue on the all-county team are seniors Reagan Ware (Greenon), Delaney Benedict (Greenon), Amy Stewart (Northeastern), Andi Meeks (Shawnee); juniors Abbigail Peterson (Catholic Central), Megan Freeman (Kenton Ridge), Terah Harness (Tecumseh); sophomore Mallory Mullen (Catholic Central) and freshman Claire Henry (Greenon). Ware won the Jim Murray Scholarship. Greenon’s Lonnie Robinson is the coach of the year.

Perdue's second decision was to go. She is 16 and entered the school year as a junior. But by the time basketball season began she decided to graduate a year early and played as a senior. She turns 17 this month and recently signed to play at Toledo. After earning second-team all-state honors, first-team all-Southwest District and being named the District 9 player of the year, she says she's ready.

Perdue’s rationale was that she could finish her classes, get started on college and redshirt a season. She discussed the idea with the final five schools on her list. But one coach – Toledo’s Tricia Cullop – had another idea.

“She said, ‘Mick, you can do that. But here’s another option. How about you just come play,’” Perdue said. “And I was like, ‘Really?’ She has to have a lot of confidence in somebody to be able to say that.”

Perdue is a 5-foot-8 guard who shot 56.2% this season and made 53 3-pointers on 43.8% shooting. She can’t get in the gym right now, but she is working to get stronger.

“I have to be ready for the other girls that are 20, 21 years old,” she said. “It’s going to be a lot more competition. They’re going to be bigger, stronger, faster.”

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