The second annual Best in State concluded this weekend with a day full of hoops as everyone readies themselves for the all important July run in front of the coaches.
16 teams from three age brackets found their way to Stone Memorial High School in Crossville and the action shall we say was hot and heavy.
We will break this down into the three age brackets starting with 15 and under for three separate stories.
We will focus on the 17 and under bracket for the final installment of the series. College coaches numbered over 25 to watch the talent on display in the 17U division.
Tennessee Chosen Few-Knoxville 17s
TCF made the most of their opportunity at Best in State with some tight action against some very tough competition.
Jordan Bowden (Carter) started the magic with a big 26 point effort against the Nashville Celtics and finished among the top scorers in the event for his day. Durrell Middleton (Powell) also had a big game against the Celtics finishing with 20 markers. Kordell Henderson (White County) and Kelvin Jackson (Carter) added 14 and 13 respectively in the win.
Henderson was a man possessed in the TCF battle against the Tennessee Tigers notching a Best in State high of 30 markers in the narrow loss. Bowden and Stanley Valentine (Hampton) also finished in double digits with 10 apiece.
Henderson continued his torrid scoring pace adding 17 as TCF fell to the surging Music City Heat in the final game of the day.
Nashville Celtics 17s
Playing undermanned the Celtics were in every game at Best in State with a core group of four who provided majority of the scoring for the days effort.
Jalen Duke (MLK) led the scoring in the opener against TCF with 22 markers followed closely by Grant Teichmann (Brentwood) and Chris Claybrooks (McGavock) with 17 each. Will Shelton (Hardin County) added 15.
Duke again led the scoring in the Chattanooga Elite contest with 20 followed closely with 19 from Claybrooks. Shelton had another fine game with 15.
Shelton parlayed those early efforts into a monster surge with 24 in the days finale against the Tennessee Bobcats. Teichmann finished with 17 and Claybrooks continued his steady day with 15 markers.
Tennessee Tigers 17s
The Tigers were in the midst of three tough games at Best in State. John Payne (Goodpasture) took the lead with a 15 spot in the opener against TCF followed in tow by a nice threesome of Colt Nokes (Gordonsville) with 13, Micah Davis (CPA) with 11 and J.T. Marable (Pearl Cohn) with 10. Davis would drain a three at the buzzer for the close victory.
Dakota Quinn (Davidson Academy) got into the act in the narrow contest versus the Tennessee Bobcats dropping 14 while Marable finished with 12 for the Tigers.
Davis took scoring honors in the finale with 12 against the Music City Heat. Marable added 11 and Quinn finished with 10 for the balanced Tiger attack.
Chattanooga Elite 17s
Marquis Tipton (Brainerd) got things off to a big start notching a 25 spot against the Nashville Celtics with Nathaniel Collins (Bledsoe County) nipping at his heels with a cool 20. Miles Cothran (Brainerd) finished up the scoring brigade with 13.
Collins made the most of his Best in State experience leading the Elite with 14 against the Tennessee Bobcats. Tre Tiller (Chattanooga Central) added 11 and Tipton finished with 10.
Collins was the most consistent player on the floor as he closed strong with a team high 12 in a tough game against the Music City Heat.
Tennessee Bobcats 17s
Balance was the key as the Bobcats clawed their way into the Best in State starting with four players in double digits in a win over the Tennessee Tigers. Peyton Woods (Kentucky) and John Bryant (Jefferson County) led the scoring with 15 each while Lucas Campbell (CAK) and Harper Feltner (Jefferson County) added a dozen each to the win.
Woods was the lone double digit scorer as the Bobcats lost in a close contest to the Chattanooga Elite before closing on a high note with a win over the Nashville Celtics.
Woods led the scoring with 18 followed by a nice 16 spot from Campbell. Bryant finished with 13 and Makale Foreman (Dobyns-Bennett) closed with 11.
Thanks to the Bobcats for filling in to play a game against one of our 16 and under teams later in the day.
Music City Heat 17s
The Heat were the only team at Best in State in this age classification to finish 3-0 using very balanced scoring and terrific defensive effort.
DeAndre Yokim (Hillwood) led the scoring in the opener against the Tennessee Tigers with 19. Torrey McGhee (East Nashville) and DeMarco Steele (Hillwood) dropped 13 and 12 respectively in the win.
McGhee took scoring honors with 16 as the Heat pushed past the Chattanooga Elite. Jaryan Young (Clarksville) added 11 in the outcome.
Yokim dropped another 19 spot this time on the TCF to close out the event. Steele added 14 as the Heat finished the day unblemished.
Top Scoring Performances 17U
Kordell Henderson (White County) 30pts vs. Tennessee Tigers
Jordan Bowden (Carter) 26pts vs. Nashville Celtics
Marquis Tipton (Brainerd) 25pts vs. Nashville Celtics
Will Shelton (Hardin County) 24pts vs. Tennessee Bobcats
Jalen Duke (MLK) 22pts vs. Tennessee Chosen Few
Nathaniel Collins (Bledsoe County) 20pts vs. Nashville Celtics
Jalen Duke (MLK) 20pts vs. Chattanooga Elite
Durrell Middleton (Powell) 20pts vs. Nashville Celtics
Chris Claybrooks (McGavock) 19pts vs. Chattanooga Elite
DeAndre Yokim (Hillwood) 19pts vs. Tennessee Tigers
DeAndre Yokim (Hillwood) 19pts vs. Tennessee Chosen Few
Top Scoring Averages 17U
Kordell Henderson (White County) 20.3
Will Shelton (Hardin County) 18.0
Chris Claybrooks (McGavock) 17.0
Jalen Duke (MLK) 17.0
Nathaniel Collins (Bledsoe County) 15.3
Marquis Tipton (Brainerd) 14.7
Peyton Woods (Kentucky) 14.7
DeAndre Yokim (Hillwood) 14.7
Jordan Bowden (Carter) 14.0
Grant Teichmann (Brentwood) 12.0
Lucas Campbell (CAK) 11.7
John Bryant (Jefferson County) 11.3
Torrey McGhee (East Nashville) 11.3
DeMarco Steele (Hillwood) 11.3
J.T. Marable (Pearl Cohn) 11.0
Dakota Quinn (Davidson Academy) 10.0