Lakewood’s TJ Tampa and Tarpon Springs’ Anabel Ellison each won the Henry Deck award as the top male and female athlete in Pinellas County.
Tampa was a dual-sport star. In the fall, he caught 30 passes for 554 yards and nine touchdowns to help the Spartans reach the Class 4A state semifinals. Tampa was an all-conference selection in football and has already signed to play football at Iowa State.
In the winter, Tampa was one of the county’s top guards in basketball. His athleticism showed on the court whenever he elevated for a dunk. Tampa averaged 10.5 points per game on a Lakewood team that won a conference title and reached the region semifinals.
The voting was close among the boys with Tampa edging East Lake’s Dionte Blanch, the Murray State signee who was named the Class 6A state player of the year in basketball and led the Eagles to their first state semifinal appearance.
Ellison, who is going to Marist, was the top choice among girls, in large part of her scoring ability on the basketball court. As a senior, she averaged 25.2 points per game and was the only player on her team to average double figures in scoring. Ellison also averaged 6.1 steals, 6 rebounds and 5.7 assists per game while leading the Spongers to a 13-10 record and a region quarterfinal appearance.