Former Oklahoma standout Ashley Paris has seen plenty of the top guards come through for the Sooners both during and after her time in Norman.
So when she heaps praise on Sooners signee Gioya Carter of Carl Albert, it means something.
“I feel like she has the potential to be one of the best guards ever to go through the University of Oklahoma,” Paris said. “She has a lot of the traits that you look for there.”
Paris got an up-close look at Carter over the summer, helping coach her AAU team.
Carter credited working with Paris for part of her improvement over the summer.
That improvement led to Carter carrying the Titans to their ninth consecutive state tournament. Now, Carter is The Oklahoman's Super 5 Player of the Year.
“Gioya grew up a ton over the last half of her junior year, leading into this year,” Carl Albert coach Tim Price said. “She got comfortable trying to take over a game. She didn't feel like she needed to be a facilitator all the time.
“She decided she was capable and willing to try to score any time our team needed it.”
Carter did that repeatedly.
Against eventual Class 6A champion Tulsa Washington in the Lady Jag Classic in early January, Carter scored 12 points in the first quarter — all on 3-pointers — although the Titans eventually lost by three.
In the area consolation finals against Lawton MacArthur, Carter hit a free throw in the closing seconds to put Carl Albert ahead, intentionally missed the second try, then had a steal to keep the Highlanders from a final scoring chance.