The holidays bring lots of action to the prep scene with events all over the Tennessee landscape. Teams are venturing into district play and things are heating up as conference titles and playoff position is being realized. Lets see what's going on around the state.
TEAMS TO CERTAINLY RECKON WITH? (STATE TOURNAMENT SURPRISES PERHAPS)
Its impossible to predict the future and I for one do not like to make predictions and such but here are five teams from each classification of the state who will be a factor in deciding who goes to state or who simply makes the trek themselves.
Perennial participant in the March madness this group is young but has the ability to make some noise in this classification. Sophomore Grant Strong (Clay County), a 6'4 guard is one to watch. Inside they lean on senior post Jake Ashlock (Clay County).
Unblemished in district play, this group will make some headlines as the stakes get higher. Ben Underwood (Lead Academy) is a 6'9 post, new this year, who will become a popular name among coaches as the season winds down.
They won the gold ball a few years back and return one of the most dynamic players in the state, 5'10 senior point guard Amari Young (Loretto). Well coached and determined, they will be heard before it is all said and done.
One of the top dawgs in this classification in the Western portion of the state. They play fast and hard led by a trio of seniors including Charterrio Porter (BTW), JC Johnson (BTW) and Mikhael Garrett (BTW)
David Dixon (MAHS) might be the best player nobody has heard of in the state. Big and talented at 6'7 he leads this group who will make some noise before things settle down.
The other unbeaten squad in the state and the only one in their classification. This perennial state tournament participant is once again thick with athletes including Brandon Maclin (Jackson Southside)
Dangerous team is well coached and hungry to make some noise this season, Collin Gore (Upperman) is a dynamic floor general while inside the Bees turn to Alex Rush (Upperman) and Filip Bobic (Upperman)
Arguably the top team on that side of the state, The Green Devils feature a dynamic duo of talented sophomores in Reid Satterfield (Greeneville) and Jacoby Gillespie (Greeneville).
Dangerous squad headlined by a pair of talented seniors including Tennessee State signee Marcus Fitzgerald (Pearl Cohn) and Mr. Basketball finalist Tyrone Marshall (Pearl Cohn).
Talented and determined squad from the West ready to represent. Trevonte Powell (Covington), Brandon Alston (Covington) and Tyjuan Smith (Covington) are a trio ready to make their way to the 'boro.
Well coached and methodical, this group plays hard and smart and will be a handful for an unprepared opponent. Jake Matherne (Science Hill) and Keenan Cutlip (Science Hill) are among a handful of contributors for the Toppers.
I think its actually illegal to have a state tournament without the Blaze. Another well coached group led by seniors Jalen Page (Blackman) and Tusculum signee Ray Tyler (Blackman).
Dangerous group with athletes all over the floor. Tre Carlton (Summit) steers the ship while a host of talented players provide the fireworks including the dynamic sophomore twins Destin Wade (Summit) and Keaton Wade (Summit).
Skill, talent, size are dangerous combinations and this Houston squad is chock full of all of the above. Mason Miller (Houston), T.J. Madlock (Houston) and Alden Applewhite (Houston) are nationally known names.
Another perennial state tournament participant, the Bruins again are a disciplined group led by junior guard John Windley (Brentwood). This squad is capable of causing some serious havoc in anyone's state plans.
WHO TO WATCH FOR AND MILESTONES GALORE
Joe Anderson (Maryville)
Huge week for the Furman signee as he corrals a Mr. Basketball nomination and becomes the all-time leading scorer in Rebel basketball history passing the great Lee Humphrey. Congrats Big Joe.
Trey Morrow (Scott)
Only a sophomore, Morrow surpassed the coveted 1,000 point barrier recently. Could he challenge for the schools all-time leader, we think yes.
Luke Burrows (Polk County)
Young man forever etching his name in school folklore achieving the 1,000 point barrier for his district leading squad.
Nathan Bowling (Oneida)
His squad goes into the district tournament as the top seed and he scribes his signature in the schools lexicon dropping his 1,000 point.
Jonathan Lawson (Wooddale)
This has been a monumental month for the rising junior with the high level pedigree. He grabbed a Mr. Basketball finalist nomination, he dropped a 50 spot in a game against Hamilton and he also recorded one of the only quadruple double we have ever seen statewide with 23 points, 16 rebounds, 10 assists and 10 blocks.
Ametri Moss (Northwest)
Clarksville native had a fine couple of weeks with scoring efforts including 29 against Montgomery Central and 25 against Kenwood. He also surpassed the 1,000 point barrier for his high school career.
Ryley McClaren (Eagleville)
If you read these reports every couple of weeks this name seems to take up quite a few lines. Recently securing a Mr. Basketball nomination he continues to pile up the points including game of 33 versus Cascade, 31 against Moore County, 30 against Summertown, 28 against Huntland and 27 against Fayetteville.
B.J. Edwards (Knoxville Catholic) and Akeem Odusipe (Knoxville Catholic)
As the only sophomore named a finalist for the coveted Mr. Basketball award in any classification, Edwards continued to pile up the accolades scoring his 1,000 point.
Akeem also surpassed the coveted 1,000 point barrier for the Irish as they prepare for the DII playoffs for the first time.
Braden Zapp (CPA) and Braden Moore (CPA)
How about a pair of teammate both surpassing the 1,000 point barrier in their respective careers. Zapp, a junior and Moore, a sophomore, are now task with helping lead the Lions deep into the playoffs.
J.J. Platt (Webb School)
Rising senior picked up the scoring slack for two-time defending Mr. Basketball Keon Johnson upon his injury and has been filling up the stat sheets. He dropped 42 against Columbia Academy, 39 large against MTCS and a cool 35 spot against BGA recently.
Ben Diamond (Sullivan South) and Trent Lovelace (Morristown West)
Congrats to both young men for etching their names into the schools scoring ledger forever each getting their 1,000 point recently. Good luck as the playoffs tip off this week.
Zach Ammonette (Pickett County)
Here's a sophomore putting up some big time numbers including 34 against Red Boiling Springs, 33 against Trousdale County and a quick 30 against Gordonsville.
Logan Goodman (Scott) and Harper Neal (Kingston)
Huge weeks for both young men. Goodman a senior has his squad poised for a run in the district playoff as he surpasses the coveted 1,000 point barrier for his career. Neal, only a junior, also moves into the 1,000 point club and forever links himself among the best to play at the school.
BIG SCORING EFFORTS
Dillon Stakely (Sequoyah) 46pts vs. Meigs County
Dylan Bartley (Sullivan East) 37pts vs. Johnson County
Nate Brackett (Rockwood) 36pts vs. Wartburg Central
Kaleb Meredith (University) 36pts vs. Johnson County
Eric Rivers (McCallie) 34pts vs. Sunrise Christian
Joe Anderson (Maryville) 33pts vs. Hardin Valley
B.J. Edwards (Knoxville Catholic) 32pts vs. CAK
Luke Burrows (Polk County) 31pts vs. Meigs County
Micah Simpson (Morristown East) 31pts vs. Cocke County
Edward Lacey (Fulton) 30pts vs. Scott
Dalton Greer (Karns) 29pts vs. Campbell County
Kendrick Holland (South Doyle) 29pts vs. Austin East
Lucas Phillips (Johnson County) 29pts vs. University
Jacobi Wood (Cleveland) 29pts vs. Soddy Daisy
Ben Diamond (Sullivan South) 28pts vs. Sullivan East
Coly Layne (Sullivan South) 28pts vs. Johnson County
Wes Maples (Sevier County) 28pts vs. Morristown West
McHale Bright (Tennessee) 27pts vs. Volunteer
Jack Neizgoda (Hardin Valley) 27pts vs. Farragut
Akeem Odusipe (Knoxville Catholic) 27pts vs. Greeneville
Nolan Wishon (Tennessee) 27pts vs. Cherokee
Joe Anderson (Maryville) 26pts vs. Lenoir City
Nate Brackett (Rockwood) 26pts vs. Coalfield
Ashton Maples (Maryville) 26pts vs. Heritage
Isaiah Pruitt (Sullivan North) 26pts vs. North Greene
Joe Anderson (Maryville) 25pts vs. Farragut
Jack Brown (Maryville) 25pts vs. Alcoa
Caden Cupp (Gibbs) 25pts vs. Carter
Tarel McClurkin (Ooltewah) 25pts vs. Cleveland
Caleb Millen (Polk County) 25pts vs. McMinn Central
Jack Neizgoda (Hardin Valley) 25pts vs. Heritage
Abiah Releford (Dobyns-Bennett) 25pts vs. Daniel Boone
Jonathan Stewart (Oak Ridge) 25pts vs. Clinton
Mason McKnatt (Grace Christian) 46pts vs. FRA
J.J. Platt (Webb School) 42pts vs. Columbia Academy
Mason McKnatt (Grace Christian) 40pts vs. Columbia Academy
J.J. Platt (Webb School) 39pts vs. MTCS
Will Pruitt (Mt. Juliet) 38pts vs. Beech
Reed Kemp (Franklin) 37pts vs. Centennial
Daniel Loos (Clarksville Academy) 36pts vs. Davidson Academy
Josh Scretchen (USN) 36pts vs. Ezell-Harding
Garrett Hollis (BGA) 35pts vs. CPA
J.J. Platt (Webb School) 35pts vs. BGA
Montre Street (McGavock) 35pts vs. Hillwood
Jaylan Washington (Kenwood) 35pts vs. Rossview
Zach Ammonette (Pickett County) 34pts vs. Red Boiling Springs
Jeremy Dotson (Santa Fe) 34pts vs. Mt. Pleasant
Asher Wolthers (Merrol Hyde) 34pts vs. STEM
Zach Ammonette (Pickett County) 33pts vs. Trousdale County
Kamarie Coffey (West Creek) 33pts vs. Clarksville
Taylor Groves (East Robertson) 33pts vs. White House
Ryley McClaren (Eagleville) 33pts vs. Cascade
Alex Rush (Upperman) 33pts vs. Cannon County
Grant Slatten (White County) 33pts vs. Warren County
Willie Walton (Lipscomb Academy) 33pts vs. Ensworth
Gage Wells (Mt. Juliet) 33pts vs. Gallatin
Braydee Brooks (Macon County) 32pts vs. Smith County
Brandon Miller (Cane Ridge) 32pts vs. McGavock
Ben Singer (DCA) 32pts vs. Friendship Christian
P.J. Smith (Goodpasture) 32pts vs. MJCA
Reed Kemp (Franklin) 31pts vs. Independence
Andrew Mathis (Frienship Christian) 31pts vs. Davidson Academy
Ryley McClaren (Eagleville) 31pts vs. Moore County
Zach Ammonette (Pickett County) 30pts vs. Gordonsville
Clayton King (Waverly Central) 30pts vs. Fairview
Devin Kline (LaVergne) 30pts vs. Smyrna
Ryley McClaren (Eagleville) 30pts vs. Summertown
Peyton West (Monterey) 30pts vs. Clay County
Reed Kemp (Franklin) 29pts vs. Dickson County
Ametri Moss (Northwest) 29pts vs. Montgomery Central
Jaylen Pegues (Hillsboro) 29pts vs. Cane Ridge
Thomas Seaman (Page) 29pts vs. Ravenwood
Montre Street (McGavock) 29pts vs. Antioch
Amari Young (Loretto) 29pts vs. Perry County
Baylee Brooks (Macon County) 28pts vs. Watertown
Marvin Hughes (McGavock) 28pts vs. Hillsboro
Ryley McClaren (Eagleville) 28pts vs. Huntland
Derek Murphy (Nashville Overton) 28pts vs. Hillwood
Grant Slatten (White County) 28pts vs. Stone Memorial
Asher Wolthers (Merrol Hyde) 28pts vs. Jo Byrns
Savon Wykle (Smyrna) 28pts vs. Riverdale
Braden Zapp (CPA) 28pts vs. Columbia Academy
Quanterrious Hughes-Malone (Watertown) 27pts vs. Macon County
Connor Johnson (Macon County) 27pts vs. Smith County
Jalen Jones (East Nashville) 27pts vs. MLK
Chaz Lanier (Ensworth) 27pts vs. Lipscomb Academy
Daniel Loos (Clarksville Academy) 27pts vs. Ezell-Harding
Ryley McClaren (Eagleville) 27pts vs. Fayetteville
Grant Slatten (White County) 27pts vs. Rhea County
Reed Kemp (Franklin) 26pts vs. Page
Brandon Miller (Cane Ridge) 26pts vs. Hunter's Lane
Harper Neal (Kingston) 26pts vs. Scott
Hrishi Saliri (Independence) 26pts vs. Ravenwood
Isaiah Shaw (Davidson Academy) 26pts vs. Friendship Christian
Grant Slatten (White County) 26pts vs. Cookeville
Brayden Smith (MTCS) 26pts vs. Columbia Academy
Montre Street (McGavock) 26pts vs. Cane Ridge
J.J. Wheat (Clarksville) 26pts vs. Rossview
Kevan Blankenship (Station Camp) 25pts vs. Wilson Central
Ty Bryant (Spring Hill) 25pts vs. Centennial
Jaime Hernandez (Page) 25pts vs. Dickson County
Jalen Jones (East Nashville) 25pts vs. White's Creek
Reed Kemp (Franklin) 25pts vs. Page
Mason McKnatt (Grace Christian) 25pts vs. Providence Christian
Ametri Moss (Northwest) 25pts vs. Kenwood
Jaylen Pegues (Hllsboro) 25pts vs. Cane Ridge
Robbie Rusciano (McEwen) 25pts vs. Bruceton
Derrion Shannon (East Robertson) 25pts vs. White House
Asher Wolthers (Merrol Hyde) 25pts vs. Lead Academy
Braden Zapp (CPA) 25pts vs. BGA
Jonathan Lawson (Wooddale) 50pts vs. Hamilton
Harmonta Griggs (Fayette-Ware) 40pts vs. Bolivar Central
Jonathan Lawson (Wooddale) 34pts vs. Sheffield
Bobby Parks (Harding Academy) 31pts vs. Memphis Nighthawks
Jamari Jackson (Power Center Academy) 30pts vs. Bluff City
Hayden Burgess (ECS) 29pts vs. USJ
Tyler Byrd (Memphis Central) 29pts vs. Memphis East
Vincent Thomas (Southwind) 29pts vs. Kirby
Jonathan Lawson (Wooddale) 28pts vs. Craigmont
Josh Parker (Soulsville) 27pts vs. Manassas
Bobby Parks (Harding Academy) 27pts vs. Northpoint
Duane Posey (Memphis East) 27pts vs. Haywood
Takeqavion Rounds (Wooddale) 26pts vs. Melrose
Kendall Thomas (Ridgeway) 26pts vs. Collierville
Darvell Williams (MLP Prep) 26pts vs. Hamilton
Amauri Abreu (White Station) 25pts vs. Memphis Overton
Kalib Brooks (Freedom Prep) 25pts vs. Fairley
Jamari Jackson (Power Center Academy) 25pts vs. Oakhaven
Daveonne Winfield (Kirby) 25pts vs. Houston
BASKETBALL FINALISTS AND MORE
The playoffs are upon us and the accolades come pouring in for the top players in the state. Here are the finalists for Mr. Basketball in each classification along with some insight on their status.
Ryley McClaren (Eagleville)
Freed-Hardeman signee who is among the leading scorers in the state.
Dalton Marsh (Red Boiling Springs)
Missouri Western signee is also the schools all-time leading scorer
Lucas King (McKenzie)
Led his boys to the state tournament last season and is among the favorites to pull it off again
Jonathan Lawson (Wooddale)
Defending state champions and among the most improved players in the state, look for a monster playoff run
Tyrone Marshall (Pearl Cohn)
Undefeated regular season will only be satisfying if capped off with a trip to the 'boro...again
Edward Lacey (Fulton)
Dynamic lead guard will have the Falcons poised for another trip to the state
Joe Anderson (Maryville)
Furman signee has become the schools all-time leading scorer now his legacy will be to lead the Rebels to state
Jacobi Wood (Cleveland)
Belmont signee pilots the only AAA unblemished squad, the stakes are high but he will rise to the occasion
Will Pruitt (Mt. Juliet)
Lipscomb signee leads the top squad in the mid-state, another trip to the Murphy Center is eminent
Alex Anderson (Tipton-Rosemark)
South Alabama commitment is poised for a return trip to the Lipscomb gym, a state championship is all that eludes him
Mousee Cisse (Lausanne)
He is a sight to behold with his overall skill level, can he help lead the Lynx to the promised land
Dante Harris (Lakeway Christian)
Georgetown signee completed an outstanding high school career and will be a Hoya in the fall.
Kennedy Chandler (Briarcrest Christian)
On the radar of every major college in America, first things first, winning the state (again) is priority one
B.J. Edwards (Knoxville Catholic)
The only sophomore up for the coveted award, Edwards now focuses on leading the Irish to a state title
Chaz Lanier (Ensworth)
Rising senor had a fantastic final campaign and will be instrumental in helping his squad make a run to state