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Posted On: 11/15/17 8:00 AM
The state of Georgia this season will be hosting some of the top tournaments and events in the nation. There are just a few key matchups to be on the look out for this year. You might be familiar with the Holiday Hoopsgiving event, the same event that bought you the Trevon Duval (IMG Academy) verse Collin Sexton (Pebblebrook) matchup. Georgia basketball has been getting a lot of national attention the last few years. Having nationally ranked players Jaylen Brown (Wheeler) and Collin Sexton (Pebblebrook) just secured the hype. Below you can check out a few matchups that you should be in attendance for this year.
Christ School, NC vs McEachern, GA – Holiday Hoopsgiving (Nov. 24th 2017)
What was once a matchup between University School, FL and McEachern, GA, University School has backed out of the event. No worries Coach Williams, who runs the Hoopsgiving event, had a back up plan. Christ School, NC will take their place. The Greenies of Christ School features nationally ranked #14 in the nation according to ESPN 6’4 PG Jalen Lecque. Lecque is an extremely athletic guard and can get the crowd hyped with his bounce and crazy dunks. Jalen ran with Southern Stampede (GA) this spring and summer on the Nike EYBL Circuit. Greenies also have a stone wall front court that will match up with McEachern’s Akingbola and Jones in 2019 F Brandon Stone and 2020 C Justice Ajogbor. By now I hope we have all heard the buzz around McEachern and the hype is real. The Indians have 10 good/great players on their roster this season headlined with nationally ranked 2019 shooting guard Isaac Okoro. This matchup will be the last game of Day 1 of a star loaded event at the Holiday Hoopsgiving at 8:30pm. Others to watch in this matchup: 2019 SG Devin Gordon (McEachern), 2020 SG Norrance Berry (Christ School), 2019 PG Quinton McElroy (McEachern), 2019 CG Ben Halvorsen (Christ School), & 2020 CG Alyn Breed (McEachern).
Gainesville, GA vs Norcross, GA – On the Radar Hoops Showcase (Nov. 18th 2017)
This game will definitely be one of Georgia’s own. The Norcross Blue Devils will no doubt be another threat to win a state championship. The job Coach McMillan and his staff does is incredible year in and out. If you have not heard yet the Blue Devils have a dynamic sophomore guard in Brandon Boston. Boston debuted his sophomore campaign with a 25 point performance against Miller Grove, GA in the Georgia Elite 8 Tip Off Classic. Brandon is ranked #17 in the nation for the class of 2020 according to ESPN. 2019 CG Kyle Studivant is another one of those high volume scorers and is a main player on this Norcross squad. As for Gainesville, Middle Tennessee commit 2018 WG KJ Buffen will be in control of the Red Elephants offense. KJ is an athletic combo forward with the ability to score and create plays for his team. This will be Gainesville’s first game of the season and will be a great test for them to see where they are as a team. The On the Radar Showcase will be hosted at Norcross High School on Saturday Nov. 18th 2017. This game will be the last game of the event and is scheduled to tip off at 8:30pm. Others to watch in this matchup: 2018 PG Dalvin White (Norcross), 2018 F Bailey Minor (Gainesville), 2018 WG Joseph Toppin (Norcross), 2018 F Jarred Rosser (Gainesville), 2019 F Issa Muhammad (Norcross), 2018 Jarrel Rosser (Gainevsille), 2019 PG Alonzo Johnson (Norcross), 2018 SG Xavier Jabo Bledson (Gainesville), & 2019 PG Brent Kelly (Gainesville).
Pebblebrook, GA vs Wheeler, GA – Region 2 class 7A Matchup
Pebblebrook and Wheeler have had some historical matchups the last few seasons. The 2015 class 7A state championship game featured these two schools and 2015 WG Jaylen Brown of Wheeler hit the game winning free throws to give Wheeler another state title and add it to their collection. Who can forget the game last season that was nationally televised on ESPN. Pebblebrook traveled to Wheeler on Feb. 3rd 2017, with No Collin Sexton in action, 2018 PG Drue Drinnon, who has now transferred to the University School in Florida, hit the game winning buzzer beater. The Falcons defeated Wheeler three times last season and the Wildcats are looking get their revenge. This season the two schools will meet twice like always due to the fact their in the same region. The first matchup will be played at Wheeler High School Saturday night on Dec. 16th 2017. The second meeting will be at the Cobb Civic Center on Friday night on Feb. 2nd 2018. This season also features a lot of next level talent on both squads. 2018s CG DJ Murray and WG Mervin James (Canisius commit) headline the Pebblebrook roster with help from 2018 CG Grant Howard. Wildcats feature the nationally ranked big man in 2018 C EJ Montgomery. Also headlining the Wheeler roster is 2019 PG Jaire Eastmond, 2019 SG Isaac Marin, 2018 WG Brandon Younger, and 2018 Tennessee State commit, F Austin Johnson. This game will be a high scoring and back and forth affair. Others to watch in this matchup: 2019 PG Jalen Harper (Pebblebrook), 2019 PG Kenny Burns (Wheeler), 2018 SG Josh Graham (Pebblebrook), 2018 CG Isaiah Holt (Wheeler), 2019 F D’Antonio Deloach (Pebblebrook), & 2020 C Darius Gaddy (Wheeler).
Miami Christian, FL vs McEachern, GA – Tournament of Champions (Dec. 28th 2017)
Miami Christian is one of the best programs out of the state of Florida. The Victors finished the season 30-2 last year. Only two losses coming from the Tournament of Champions and losing against Georgia powerhouse Norcross and John Marshall (VA). Coach Cordona and the Miami Christian squad will make their way back to the metro Atlanta area and participate yet again in the Tournament of Champions hosted at Wheeler High School. The Victors were an exciting bunch last season and bought the hype as well to Atlanta. This season they will up against another nationally ranked team, McEachern. Miami Christian returners one of their better players and arguably their best player in 2018 6’0 PG Neftali Alvarez. Alvarez ran with Nike Team Florida this past spring and summer. He is a true pure point guard who has the vision and can see plays before they happen. He will be up against a tough group from McEachern. The matchup between him and 2020 PG Sharife Cooper should be interesting and will headline this one.
Meadowcreek, GA vs Norcross, GA – Region 7 class 7A Matchup
The Mustangs of Meadowcreek is a squad we cannot sleep on this year. This team will look to give Norcross a run for their money and the region title. Both of these squads are in the same region, Region 7, for class 7A and will face each other twice or maybe three times if we get lucky and see them face off in the region title game. Norcross defeated Meadowcreek three times last season. The Mustangs have a few elite players on their roster. 2019 WG Jamir Chaplin is just one of them. This kid is one of the most athletic guys in the state of Georgia and finishing at the basket is no question. He is also a lock down defender and will look to stop one of the top scorers in the nation Kyle Sturdivant of Norcross. 2018 F Corey Hightower is another key piece to this Meadowcreek squad. Will he be able to keep Brandon Boston of Norcross from scoring? That will be the question as this matchup gets closer and closer. Let us not forget about the potential Issa Muhammad (Norcross) and Amari Kelly (Meadowcreek) matchup in the paint. Both big will impact the glass and their squads and both guys are 6’8. These two schools first meeting will be at Norcross on Tuesday Dec. 12th and the second meeting will be Friday Jan. 26th at Meadowcreek.
Montverde Academy, FL vs Trinity Episcopal, VA – Holiday Hoopsgiving (Nov. 24th 2017)
This matchup will be one to definitely attend if you are thinking of stopping by this year’s Holiday Hoopsgiving. The national powerhouse in Montverde Academy will be playing their first game of the season in Atlanta, GA. The Eagles feature the #1 player in the nation, 2018 F and Duke commit RJ Barrett. Barrett can do it all and is a matchup problem with all opponents. This past summer Barrett led the U19 Canadien men’s national team to a gold medal. RJ can score at will and is really unstoppable on the offensive end. Montverde also has a kid named Mike Devoe. Devoe is a 6’3 PG who is commited to play basketball at Georgia Tech. Mike recently transferred from Oak Ridge High School, which is also located in the Orlando area. 2018 PG Trevin Wade will also make his return home to his hometown. Trevin transferred to Montverde Academy after playing his junior year at South Cobb High School located in Austell, GA. The Eagles are not facing an easy opponent to start the season off. They will be facing Armando Bacot and the Trinity Titans from Virginia. Bacot is a 6’9 forward who is one of the top recruits in the nation, currently ranked #24 in the nation in the class of 2019. He will have some help trying to take down Montverde from the 2018 6’4 SG Jason Wade. Jason is a really underrated guard for the class of 2018. He can create his own shot off the dribble and can get hot from behind the arc in just seconds. Wade had a great run this summer with Boo Williams (VA) on the Nike EYBL Circuit and has commited to Old Dominion. This matchup will be played right before the Christ School, NC and McEachern, GA game, so we are in luck of some great back to back games. Other to watch in this matchup: 2019 SG Trae Broadnax (Montverde), 2020 F Burke Smith (Trinity), 2018 PG Andrew Nembhard (Montverde/Florida commit), 2019 F Jordan Mitchell (Montverde), 2019 F Mahki Mitchell (Montverde/Maryland commit), 2019 F Mahkel Mitchell (Montverde/Maryland commit), 2018 F Karrington Davis (Montverde), 2018 C Filip Petrusev (Montverde/Gonzaga commit).