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Posted On: 11/23/18 1:01 PM
Prep Hoops Missouri was in the house for the final day of the Arcadia Valley Thanksgiving Tournament, which is the oldest running tournament in the state of Missouri at 92 years old. the tournament was dominated by a talented South Iron team that won every game by more than 25 points.
Here are my five takeaways from my evening at Arcadia Valley:
The Panthers looked the part of a Class 1 contender with its young and talented group that will score a lot of points. They have a three-headed perimeter monster in 6’2″ 2021 Brock Wakefield, 5’8″ 2022 Drenin Dinkins and 6’0″ 2022 DJ Prater. These are very skilled kids who can pass the ball and get buckets. They have an undersized, yet athletic 2021 forward in 6’1″ Jemarco Burse, who rebounds and blocks shots. They will be a prime contender in Class 1 for the next four seasons.
What makes the Panthers so dangerous is that they play so well together despite being such as a young team. The reason is that they have been playing together since they started grade school. They pass the ball to each other, they know where each other is going to be on the court and they also feed also one another. That’s what makes them so much fun to watch.
There was an impressive group of young players on hand at the tournament. In addition to the four excellent youngsters from South Iron, you also had 5’10” 2010 guard Kyle Conkright of Ellington, 6’0″ 2021 guard Bryce King of Ellington and 6’1″ 2021 guard Carter Brogan of host Arcadia Valley. The tournament is in good hands for the next several years.
Despite the lopsided loss to South Iron in the championship game, the Bearcats are primed for another successful season. They had an impressive come-from-behind victory over Ellington in the semifinals to get to the championship game. After winning the tournament last year for the first time in decades, Lesterville went on to win 15 games. They return some solid players in 6’0″ 2021 guard Riley Mathes, 5’10” 2020 guard Holden Laughman and 6’4″ 2020 forward James Gipson.
The Blackcats enjoyed an impressive performance against Ellington in the third-place game to win 72-47 in their best performance at the A-V Tournament in recent memory. They were led by 2019 guard Alex Winkelman, who can really shoot the 3-pointer, and muscular 2019 guard Colton Rehkop.