Belmont captured their second Tennessee hoopster on this day when Blake Jenkins (Bearden) decided to end his college process and chose to play for Coach Rick Byrd and the Bruins of Belmont.
Jenkins, who helped Bearden into the 2009 state tourney, was a much improved player his enior campaign. Showing the hustle and dedication on both ends of the floor made his value skyrocket as the hoops season trudged along.
The 6'6 wing can score off the dribble, is very good in transition and has improved his outside shot to where it is a weapon as well.
Jenkins joins Ian Clark (Germantown) as Tennessee hoopsters heading to the Atlantic Sun stalwart.
The Bruins missed making the NCAA tourney this season after losing to ETSU in the league championship game. If you recall the Bruins were a missed shot away from besting heavyweight Duke in last years tourney.
Jenkins becomes the second Bulldog to pledge D1 as his running mate Dustin Craig (Bearden) did so earlier in the season.
The news was good for CPA shooting guard Hunter Miller, as the 6'1 senior pledged to continue his basketball career at Florida Gulf Coast University.
Miller brings a great knowledge of the game and will work hard enough to find his way into some playing time next year for the Eagles.
Florida Gulf Coast University is a member of the Atlantic Sun Conference.
Miller, who helped lead CPA to the state tourney last season, fell just short of returning to the 'boro this year.
The Eagles are coached by Dave Balza.
The first day of the state tourney gave us a drama filled opener, some real success for the city of Chattanooga and a Summertown victory in the barnburner finale.
Marcus Holloway (Manassas) banked a running three pointer and gave the Tigers of Manassas a tight 63-60 victory over the previously unbeaten Vikings. Holloway's heave preceded a magical three from Humboldt senior Rashad Wade that tied the contest at 60.
Kendall Woodard led the Tigers in scoring with 16. Holloway added 15, while Mr. Basketball finalist Reginald Buckner added 14 points,12 caroms and 4 blocks. Sophomore Joseph Northington added 10 for Manassas.
Humboldt's two big guns led the charge in the scorebooks with Tevin Crayton dropping 16 and Charles Taylor adding 12.
Grace Baptist 77
Grace Christian 58
Brandon Herman and Terrell Church scored 25 and 20 respectively and held Grace Christian sharpshooter Ryan Slusher to few opportunities in the second half while leading the Golden Eagles to a 77-58 victory over their sister school from Knoxville.
Slusher was 5-5 in the first half from three before a slight adjustment in the Garce defense limited his second half touches, the lanky senior finished with 18 for the Rams.
Charleston Southern signee Patrick Shaughnessy added 14 in the win.
Grace will now battle Manassas on Friday morning.
Chattanooga made it two for two as the Crusaders got 19 points and 11 boards from senior Mr. Basketball finalist Jeremy Sexton and dispatched of the Highlanders 64-50. James Kemp added 15 for the Crusaders and senior Jarrod Johnson pitched in with 11.
Junior Logan Morgan led the highlnaders with 16 and sophomore Matthew Potter finished with 15.
Temple moves on to tangle with Summertown.
Clarksville Academy 50
Senior leadership appeared to be difference as the Eagles of Summertown behind 21 points from Logan Harville and 16 from senior Mr. Basketball finalist Wes Long got by a talented young Cougar team 53-50.
Sophomore Malcolm Smith was a beast for the Cougars finishing with 24 points and 14 boards.
Bubba Clifton added 13 points and 9 boards for Summertown.
Three days and counting!!!!!
The state tournament always the best time of year for fans and junkies of the hoop alike. Here is a look and a preview of the upper portion of the bracket for the teams headed to state from the Class A division.
Manassas vs. Humboldt
Grace Baptist vs. Grace Christian
Coach: Gerald Harris
Top Players: Reginald Buckner, Kindle Woodard, Shaq Walker
Region Final: 71-59 winner over Scotts Hill
Sub-State: 67-56 winner over Lake County
I'm sorry but this should be the championship game. Manassas returns to state after losing in the championship game last season and is poised to remain in the field after day one. The two favorites for the crown will face off in the opening game of the day with the Tigers taking on the state only unbeaten squad in Humboldt. Manassas will look to Mr. Basketball candidate Reginald Buckner to be in top form as they tangle with the Vikings. Manassas lost a great deal of experience off of last years team but has the players to bring the gold ball to Memphis.
Coach: Thomas Boykin
Top Players: Tevin Crayton, Charles Taylor, Darren Dunbar
Region Final: 72-54 winner over Lake County
Sub-State: 75-49 winner over Scotts Hill
Well you gotta play em sometimes so why not get it out of the way quick. Humboldt comes in as the state lone unblemsihed squad and they get a test right from the jump. Is it good or bad....we'll see. Tevin Crayton has played phenomenal since the playoffs have started and will draw the attention of all the college coaches who make their way to the Murphy Center on Wednesday. Humboldt is deep, talented and determined to bring the shiny gold basketball back to their friendly confines.
Nickname: Golden Eagles
Coach; Jon Mattheis
Top Players: Brandon Herman, Patrick Shaughnessy, Terrell Church
Region Final: 78-71 winner over Temple
Sub-State: 74-42 winner over Clarkrange
Brandon Herman leads a talented Golden Eagles squad against their sister squad from Knoxville. Herman and Church will be called upon to control the tempo and provide the scoring out front while inside they can turn to Charleston Southern signee Patrick Shaughnessy who will have a decided height advantage over the Rams.
Coach: Anthony Lamb
Top Players: Cameron pridemore, Ryan Slusher, David Amos
Region Final: 53-48 winner over Rockwood
Sub-State: 48-44 winner over University
Last year the Rams made the trip to the 'boro and were simply happy to be involved, this year they would like to stay a bit longer if they could. Their sister school from Chatt town might have some objections to this premise but the game should be fun to watch. The Rams get majority of their scoring from point man Cameron Pridemore and talented wing Ryan Slusher. If someone else steps up and prives some buckets this could help the coahcing staff arrange for a couple more nights in the motel.
District 13AAA Champion: Liberty Tech/JCM
District 13AAA MVP: Ricky Williams (Liberty Tech)
District 14AAA Champion: Raleigh Egypt
District 14AAA MVP: Anthony Jones (Raleigh Egypt)
All Region Team
Anthony Jones (Raleigh Egypt) Region MVP
Desmond Lee (JCM)
Desmond Thompson (Craigmont)
Ricky Williams (Liberty Tech)
Gentry Hines (Raleigh Egypt)
Kaneal Windom (JCM)
Chris Prather (Hardin County)
A.J. Johnson (Arlington)
A.J. Cunningham (Cordova)
Tarius Johnson (Liberty Tech)
Ronald Brown (Raleigh Egypt)
Will Gilcrest (Hardin County)
Zach Jones (Craigmont)
Marquis Richardson (Munford)
Jarsten Clark (JCM)
Cordero Williams (Liberty Tech)
District 15AAA Champion: White Station
District 15AAA MVP: Joe Jackson (White Station)
District 16AAA Champion: Melrose
District 16AAA MVP: Adonis Thomas (Melrose)
All Region Team
Joe Jackson (White Station) Region MVP
Ian Clark (Germantown)
Tim Peete (Memphis Central)
Adonis Thomas (Melrose)
Todd Mayo (Houston)
Marquis Wilson (Wooddale)
Tarik Black (Ridgeway)
Chris Jones (Melrose)
Ferrakohn Hall (White Station)
Nick Mason (Southwind)
Tyler Stone (Memphis Central)
Andre Hollins (White Station)
Marterrace Brock (Ridgeway)
Terry Leake (Whitehaven)
Jarekious Bradley (Memphis East)