2016 NYSPHSAA Hall of Fame Countdown: Melissa 'Missy' A. West
Author: David Almaviva, NYSPHSAA Communications Intern/Joe Agostinelli, NYSPHSAA Director of Communications
Melissa “Missy” A. West is one of the most accomplished basketball and softball players in New York State history. West continues adding to her plethora of accolades in basketball and softball from once being an athlete to now a successful basketball coach.
A graduate of Franklin Academy (Section 10), West was a star athlete in both basketball and softball. She was named Miss Basketball for New York State following the 1995-96 season. She ranks ninth in New York Girls Basketball history with 2,605 career points.
As a pitcher for Franklin Academy, West threw 15 career no-hitters in softball, including seven during the 1995 season. Her seven no-hitters in one season ranks third all-time in NYSPHSAA history. Two of those no-hitters were perfect games, one shy of the NYSPHSAA record for most perfect games in a season. West was the Class B player of the year for both the 1995 and 1996 season. Her success in the sport continued as she went on to receive Honorable Mention as All-American in USA Today and a National Softball Coaches Association Louisville Slugger All-American her junior season.
West has already been elected into the Franklin Academy/St. Joseph’s Academy Hall of Fame and the New York State Sportswriters Hall of Fame.
West attended Duke University on a basketball scholarship. During her career, she led her team to five NCAA appearances, including a trip to the National Championship game in 1999.
Following her college career, she played professionally in Germany, where she won a German National Championship.
Today, West passes down her knowledge and skill of the sport as head basketball coach at St. Leo University, a Division 2 school outside of Tampa, Florida. Previously, she coached six seasons at Hartwick College. At Hartwick, West broke a number of school records and coached her team to two NCAA appearances.
West is one of six inductees going into the NYSPHSAA Hall of Fame this summer. The NYSPSHAA Hall of Fame Class of 2016 will be enshrined during a ceremony on Wednesday, July 27, at Turning Stone Resort in Verona.