By Jarrod Harris
Times West Virginian
An all-around superstar.
Former North Marion girls’ basketball standout Mariah Byard was a player who couldn’t be stopped in high school.
Now a sophomore starting shooting guard for the Ohio University Bobcats, Byard had a high school career that would produce a best-selling novel for sports fans across the nation.
In high school, Byard toyed with opponents during her senior season, averaging nearly a triple-double every game — 18.6 points per game, 10.3 assists per game and 9.3 rebounds per game.
In her final season with the Huskies, she helped guide the team to a 25-0 record, earning not just one state Player of the Year honor, but nabbing her second state Player of the Year award in 2011, which is a feat that only a few can say they accomplished.
She also capped her career with a state championship win over South Charleston that gave both her and her teammates three consecutive Class AAA state titles.
“I loved every minute of it,” Byard said. “The honors were OK, but the thing that I was most ecstatic about was the state championships. Also, I enjoyed the relationships that I made with my teammates and coaches, plus the community.”
Even though she had accolades that were through the roof during her junior and senior seasons, it was her sophomore year that put both North Marion girls’ basketball and Mariah Byard on the map.
In the state championship game against Huntington, Byard stepped back with a few seconds remaining on the clock and nailed a game-winner, giving North state title No. 1.