Posted On: 01/10/19 11:45 PM

It took a minute for the backcourt of Memphis East to hit its stride, but it finally did, thanks to the bumps and bruises it took early in the season.

There were questions about how Antonio Thomas would come in and have an impact at the point guard spot after the departure of Alex Lomax. Thomas, who came from Ridgeway High School, was quickly met with lofty expectations from day one.

Yet, he didn’t get frustrated whenever he turned the basketball over or didn’t make the right pass. His coach, Jevonte Holmes, just kept telling Thomas to keep playing. Senior shooting guard Derrein Merriweather knows what it takes to win a state championship.

He played a reserve role last season under Penny Hardaway, who led Memphis East to three straight state titles. With Merriweather’s return, he was expected to be a leader for a backcourt with new faces. But, Merriwether, along with Thomas, struggled early in the season in their new roles.

For the first half of the season, James Wiseman and Malcolm Dandridge carried the Mustangs to one win after another, while Thomas and Merriweather tried to figure out how to live up to being consistent playmakers alongside Wiseman

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