Monday, April 14, 2014

Stars Shine at Ohio All-Star Classic

Lenzelle Smith, Garrick Simms, Ernie McCoy, Nick Kellogg & Brandon Carr

Although the 2013-14 high school and college basketball seasons are in the books, there was still competitive basketball to be found in central Ohio. Johnny Clarks’ Jump 25 organization held their annual Ohio All-Star Classic event at the Rike Center on the campus of Otterbein University on Sunday, and the event featured several competitive and entertaining games boys and girls high school and college all-star games.

The boys high school games attracted area favorites like Ronnie Williams (Brookhaven), Danny Hummer (Upper Arlington), Manny Powell (Gahanna), Nate Jameson (Eastmoor Academy), Logan Richter (Upper Arlington) and R.J. Hutchinson (Westerville North). In the college all-star game, local guys like Lenzelle Smith (OSU), Nick Kellogg (Ohio University), Jerran Young (Wright State), Garrick Sims (Lake Erie College), Ernie McCoy (Ohio Christian), Doug Thorpe (Wooster) and Oliver McGlade (Seaton Hill) laced them up one last time in their school’s jerseys.

I only got the chance to check out the college game, and boy was it fun!  Not only was the game very competitive for an all-star game, it was entertaining as well.  In addition to some long range bombs by players from both teams, there were a lot of drives to the basket that led to either a sweet dime of a crowd-pleasing dunk. Ohio State’s Lenzelle Smith was clearly on a mission, as he bullied his way to a game-high 30 points and MVP honors. Smith knocked down jumpers, attacked the cup, rebounded and finished with contact at a high rate. Ohio Christian’s Ernie McCoy put on a show like only he could pull off. With his own personal cheering section in the stands provoking him, McCoy put on an “And 1” type display the excited the crowd. With the ball on a string, McCoy is a magician with the rock who can not only find an open teammate anywhere, but can also make the spectacular shot.  Don’t leave him open; he can shoot it too.

Lake Erie’s Garrick Sims was a monster in the paint and was almost unguardable. Sims finished with 22 points. Ohio’s Nick Kellogg capped a stellar season at OU with a big time performance in the game. Kellogg shot his way to a 22 points performance, most of which came from beyond the arc. Brandon Carr had a good game, finishing with a team-high 22 points, while Wooster’s Doug Thorpe provided early offense to his team and had 9 points by half time. In terms of the outcome, the Lenzelle Smith-led Hometeam Properties All-Stars erased an early deficit to get the 119-107 win over the Kimbell Midwest All-Stars. A fun game to watch! Congratulations to Johnny Clark for a great event!

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