Team Nashville 16's battled hard and used some sterling defensive efforts from Corn Elder (Ensworth) and Matt Pond (Centennial) but came up short in semi-final action at the Knox Vegas Heat Invitational falling to a powerful Garner Road squad 65-54.
Team Nashville got out early behind some quality board work from Pond but simply lacked the size after size that Garner Road was inserting into the game.
Elder was strong in the second half cutting a 12 point deficit almost to nothing by himself with a deep three, a bucket in transition, a steal and another bucket.
Darius Thompson (Blackman), Trent McLaurin (Kenwood), Josh Phillips (PJPII), Ivan Alsup (Overton) and Connor Hayes (Homeschool) played solid the entire event as Team Nashville swept their pool and collected a big playoff win to advance to the final four.
17 And Under
In the 17 and under division Team Nashville finished second in their pool and advanced to the first round of bracket action before falling to the Memphis Hawgs.
Elder pulled double duty this weekend starring for the 17's and 16's. Devin Robinson (Ravenwood), Vari Craig (Riverdale), John Hudson (Dyer County) and Fred Yarbrough (Dyer County) all had outstanding weekends according to the staff.
The Tennessee Tigers had a good showing finishing 1-2 losing to the North Carolina Raptors and the Wisconsin Playground Warriors on a buzzer beater before winning their final pool game by an impressive 19 markers.
Ross Welch (USN), Casey Smith (Morristown East) and Will Downey (Ensworth) had fine tournament efforts.
The Tennessee Chosen Few also finished their weekend at 1-2 with a strong 12 point win over Team Under Armour in the pool play finale. Blake Williams (Farragut) led in scoring with 20 points in the victory. Cory Nelson (Grace Baptist) added 15 markers, Cleveland Davidson (Rockwood) chipped in with 12 and Tanner Torres (Anderson County) added 11 points.
16 And Under
The Tennessee Tigers 16's had a wonderful showing at the Knox Vegas Heat Invitational finishing second in their pool with wins over Florida Assault and the Charlotte Storm. The Tigers came away at 3-2 behind some serious work from JaQuan Lewis (Dickson County), Austin Howard (Giles County), Bryce Copeland (Bradley Central), C.J. McEwen (Mt. Juliet), Kessler Bell (FRA) and Gunnar Miller (Davidson Academy).
Tennessee Chosen Few also had a nice showing in the 16 and under division finishing second in their pool and ending up at 2-2. Will Adams (Science Hill) ran the show for TCF and played outstanding according to his coaches. Menes Bailey (Austin East) controlled the boards and blocked at least three shots in every game. Daijon McGill (Austin East) and Robert Moon (Bearden), a newcomer to the Knoxville scene both had solid tournaments.
Jordan Hall (Lenoir City), Camion Patrick (Clinton) and Blake Golden (Knoxville West) played well but the East Tennessee Pyro finished at a 0-3 clip on the weekend.
Jay Cade (Gibbs) finished as a double digit scorer for the weekend, while his Team Hustle fought hard but couldn't come up with a win in pool play.
15 And Under
Primetime Elite ran through pool play in the 15 and under division at 3-0 and finished strong at the Knox Vegas Heat Invitational. Vic Wharton (Knoxville Catholic) controlled the tempo and was flanked by some great scoring and shooting efforts from the likes of Cameron Turner (Farragut), Isaac Edminston (Maryville) and Jalin Henderson (Oak Ridge).
Team Corey Brewer finished their inaugural tourney at 1-2 losing one pool game on a last second buzzer beater. Jacob Williams (Wilson Central) played strong the entire tournament for Team C.B. Derrick Spears (MTCS), Ryan Jones (Siegel) and Charles Clark (Siegel) also played well according to the coaches.