Recent Grand Haven High School graduate Hannah Wilkerson was named the MVP of the Champions of Character all star girls basketball game on Thursday night at Cornerstone University.
Wilkerson, who guided the Buccaneers to back-to-back Class A state championships the past two years, was a part of the West team. She scored 15 points, including a 3-pointer and several key free throws in her team’s 78-73 win.
Grand Haven coach Katie Kowalczyk-Fulmer coached the West squad and said it was wonderful to connect with Wilkerson again.
“It was nice to coach Hannah one more time,” Kowalczyk-Fulmer said. “We were down six at halftime and came back, and Hannah did what she does best. She hit a 3, was a slasher to the basket. It was cool when they named her MVP.”
The game featured 20 of the top players in the Grand Rapids area. Former Buccaneer Abby Cole was invited to play, but she is in Florida with her AAU volleyball team.
A boys game was held after the girls’ contest.
“It was pretty laid back and fun, and there was a pretty good crowd,” Kowalczyk-Fulmer said. “Coaching the best players in the area, it was fun because I got to meet nine kids I didn’t really know and got to meet them on a personal level. Every kid that played in the game is going to college to play basketball.”
Wilkerson will play at Ferris State University next year.
The basketball games capped off a full day of events put on by Champions of Character — a program that was created to help change the culture of sports. Its mission is to “provide training to instill the values that build character so students, coaches and parents know, do and value the right thing on and off the field.”
“It was an all-day type thing with a luncheon, and they really stressed character,” Kowalczyk-Fulmer said.
Well-know Big Ten official Ted Hillary was the keynote speaker.