Some people ask me now that the high school season is over doesn't it get easier on you.
Those people don't understand that hoops is a year around event and this weekend was just the start of this journey.
Made the trip down to Seymour High School to catch a glimpse of the 14 and under sub-state tourney. With the proximaty it's great to see some of the future high school stars in the area. Some who certainly cauight my eye were:
Jay Cade (Gibbs); Blake Golden (Knoxville West); Ryan Hall (Oak Ridge); Shannon Hale (Science Hill); Will Adams (Science Hill) and Alex Fountain (Wartburg Central).
The morning took me to Alcoa High School for a quick glimpse of the Tennessee Travelers practice in the 15 and 16 and under division.
Lester Wilson (Carter) seemed to be playing with extreme confidence and it showed the entire time I was there. Guard play will be a strength with Galen Campbell (Bearden), Rico White (Bearden), DeAndre Mattheiu (Knoxville Central) and Jordan Cross (Sullivan East) all able and ready to make multiple things happen.
Over with the 15's, Craig "The Professor" Bradshaw (Greenbrier) has elevated his game to must see status. Some nice inside talent to go along with some very talented guards and wings including risi star Jaylen Allen (Science Hill) speaks well for the future of this long standing Tennessee tradition.
On the road to get to Murfreesboro to catch some games at the Riverdale Hoops Classic.
Teraes Clemmons (Mt. Juliet) and Emmanuel Andrews (Shelbyville) helped Team Nashville sqeeze by a tough Chattanooga Warriors squad. Talented Class of 2011 point Damein Suttles (Tyner Academy) along with the Hoard pair of Demetrye Young and Chris Deloney kept this one tight till the end.
Next the Mid-State Ballerz West played a tight game with the Tennessee Heat before finally prevailing. Tarius Johnson (Liberty Tech), Demarius Smith (Kenwood) and Thomas Greer (West Carroll) all played well for Mid-State while the Heat got solid performances from David Woodard (East Robertson), Demarco Starling (Hunters Lane) and Robin Perry (Hunters Lane).
The Mid-State Ballerz Middle 17 and under group played well getting past a Chattanooga Dream Team. Balance defines this Ballerz squad who got good performances from E.J. Perry (Westmoreland), JuJuan Blaylock (Liberty Tech) and Zach Sherrill (Stone Memorial)
The Tennessee A-Game 16 and under squad bested the Nashville Celtics 15's in a very tight game. Cornelius Elder (Ensworth) a Class of 2013 guard played well despite being under the weather.
The evenings final contest saw the Mid State Ballerz North 16's battle the Middle Tennessee Magic to a tough contest prevailing at the end. Jaeland Lawson (Bearden) put on a show with the basketball scoring off every drive to the hoop and making his team better as well. The Magic are strong with Malcolm and Martin Smith (Clarksville Academy) leading the way.
I will be doing some AAU/Summer team previews as early as next week, please if you can email me your rosters to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Look forward to seeing everyone out around the court this summer.
I wanted to say a quick and hearty thank you to everyone that helped us acheive a milestone for the website this past month. We had the most hits we've ever had in our five year history and this could not be accomplished without everyone who takes the time to come and check out what we are doing. Thanks again and lets keep making this better.