Goodbye: Tribute to Eliminated Seniors

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Tennessee

Posted On: 02/26/18 6:26 PM

While the spotlights of March typically shine directly on the winners, hundreds of wonderful hoopers wrap their basketball careers unceremoniously end their careers in the dingy recesses of a neutral court locker room.

For young men who devoted four years of their lives, countless hours of time, and buckets of sweat to the sport a moderate applause feels insufficient.  Today @PrepHoopsTN redirects that spotlight on some players who accomplished greatness for their school, their program, and most importantly their teammates.

Senior wing Zool Kueth (tweeted above) earned District 9AAA MVP.  He helped his Gallatin Green Wave to a share of the 9AAA District Championship (tied with Mt. Juliet).  Also, the whole Gallatin team helped Head Coach Bobby Luna surpass his 400th career victory.

Other Gallatin seniors, Zyun Mason, Parish Cloud, Collin Minor, and Maison Terrell are done.

Gallatin lost to West Creek in the Regional Quarterfinals.

Antioch truly challenged a wonderful Franklin Rebel team Saturday night, falling 59-50.   The Antioch Bears featured a fearsome backcourt of Lavric Mangala and Ibrahim Nasir.

“We thought one of the big things was to make [Lavric Mangala] go left if we could,” said Franklin Head Coach Darrin Wilson.  “And no matter what back up from him.  I would much rather him shoot perimeter shots…he can do that too…than go to the rack.  I thought our defense, the way we were playing it sort of hemmed him in.  We were worried about obviously #0 and #1, those were the two guys we were the most worried about.”

Ibrahim Nasir wears #0…err, he did.  Sadly, Ibrahim’s high school career is over.  Nasir talked about his last game with @PrepHoopsTN Saturday night.

The Beech Bunch

Jayson Brown’s prep career is also over.  The outgoing senior guard recorded his 1,000th career point this season.  He attracted several college coaches and generally lead his Buccaneers to some nice wins. Teammate Mitchell Sorenson committed just as much to the team.  The 6-foot-3 wing guard rebounded with the big boys, defended, and provided scoring for Beech.

Tripped Up

One of the greatest scorers in Goodpasture basketball history, Tripp McEachern lost to a mighty Lausanne Collegiate squad, 86-82.

Tripp scored 42 points in the loss.  He finished his illustrious career with 1,424 points.  Only five Goodpasture Cougars ever put up more points in their career, including Ron Mercer and Drew Maddox.  McEachern rests at sixth All-Time.

 

Knoxville Catholic (21-8) assembled one of the best basketball teams in the state.  Joining seniors Brock Jancek and Jack Sompayrac was one of the best sophomores statewide, Akeem Odusipe.

The Fighting Irish conquered 12 straight opponents from Thanksgiving Day to just after Christmas Day.  KCHS was on a roll, seemingly unbeatable.  Bearden, one of the best teams in the state, knocked off Knoxville Catholic twice and Maryville dominated the Irish thrice.  Because Maryville dropped KCHS last week the Fighting Irish were relegated to the daunting #3 seed.  That seed lined up Knoxville Catholic with a tricky Oak Ridge squad.

Oak Ridge ousted Brock and Jack easily, 62-41.

Look back at what Brock and Jack accomplished together.  They advanced to the Class AA Championshipin in 2017, losing finally to Maplewood.  They won over 20 games every single season and surpassed 30 victories in that wildly successful 2016-2017 campaign.

The Hunt is Over

Hunters Lane accomplished only two wins in the 2017 portion of this season.  Still, the Warriors (Kendall Winston, Tray Esaw, Antonio Lennear) found their groove in February.  Together they won five of their last six games entering into the Regional Quarterfinals Saturday night.

Centennial figured out their puzzle though and sent several seniors, 74-49.

Kendall Winston and Tray Esaw played great basketball the last two weeks.  Winston poured in gobs and gobs of points.  Esaw locked up guards from Hillsboro to McGavock.  While Kendall looks to play college basketball he and his teammates will never forget that late season run their senior seasons.