Ravenscroft guard Anton Gill drives on Greenfield's Sam Hughes in the Carolina Challenge at Ravenscroft High School (photo by Greg Mintel).
Here are the highlights from today’s fifth annual Dave Telep’s Carolina Challenge at Ravenscroft High School:
Word of God’s T.J. Warren opened up the Carolina Challenge with scoring 40 points. Upper Room Christian Academy’s Tyrek Coger won the game’s most intriguing matchup over fellow sophomore center Kennedy Meeks with West Charlotte.
“That was an easy 40 points he scored, too, so that was impressive,” Ravenscroft guard Anton Gill said.
Shooting guard Torian Graham has transferred from Word of God to Pace Academy in Chapel Hill. Graham said it’s likely he’ll play at a public school in Durham next year, but he’s certain he won’t be back at Word of God.
Terry Henderson of Neuse Christian said the Ivy League schools have taken serious looks at him for scholarship. Among the schools are Penn, Cornell and Harvard. Henderson, who averaged 23 points a game last season, is also being considered by Texas A&M, Richmond, Wake Forest and Virginia Tech.
Louisville recruit Rodney Purvis was more of a passer than a shooter Saturday. Although Purvis, a guard at Upper Room Christian Academy, has been known for been able to score plenty of points by getting to the basket, Purvis was averaging just 12 points in his first two games of the Carolina Challenge. Purvis, who will be asked to handle the basketball at Louisville, seemed to focus more on getting his teammates open for shots.
Middle Creek guard Quinton Ray was aggressive on the defense end has he was able to create some steals that translated into easy points. Ray will be asked to run the offense next year for the Mustangs, and coach David Kushner expects Ray to improve in the offseason.
“I think this event helps [the players] want to get better and learn from one another,” Kushner said. “If Quinton works on his game the way I know he can, he can get up there in the mid-major level for scholarships.”
Ravenscroft had three players participate in the Carolina Challenge, the most of any Triangle area school. Guards Anton Gill and Madison Jones along with center Marcus Bryan each scored more than 10 points in each of their games. Gill led the trio with 28 points in one of his games. Gill also had the highlight of the day with a windmill dunk in his first game.
“I didn’t have anybody behind me, and I was kind of tired, but I said I have to try something,” he said. “It was fun to have a play like that and it brought energy into the gym.”
Other notable quotes:
Middle Creek coach David Kushner on the overall talent at the Carolina Challenge:
This area has so much potential to have kids at [the Division I] level. Everybody talented, but if they can have that willingness and desire to get better, and if they can get that out of it, then this event will always be worth it.”
Dave Telep, a senior basketball-recruiting analyst for ESPN.com, on the younger talent at the event with the 80 players invited, 43 were freshmen and sophomores:
“In this camp we have more younger guys than I prefer to have, but that’s where the talent is in our state. The thinking is it’s going to help these guys grow and eventually take over. The guys who are freshmen and sophomore will get better. They see their natural progress in playing older guys.”
Anton Gill on what the Carolina Challenge means to him:
“This is a reminder that I have to keep working hard. A lot of people don’t realize this, but we usually stay in touch with these guys. You can’t get complacent because they are so many good guys who are young.”