|Reigning region champion EMCC Lions produce another banner hoops recruiting class|
The Lions’ incoming class of basketball signees was announced this week by EMCC men’s basketball coach Mark White.SCOOBA – Following back-to-back national tournament appearances and consecutive region championships, the East Mississippi Community College men’s basketball team has reloaded with seven newcomers joining seven returning veterans for the upcoming 2011-12 hoops campaign.
Locally within East Mississippi’s recruiting district area, the Lions have added former Northeast Lauderdale High School backcourt teammates A.J. Wade (6-2, 160) and Brandon Moss (6-1, 165). As a four-year starter and 1,000-point career scorer for head coach Lewis Lightsey at NEL, Wade was chosen Region 5-4A MVP after averaging 14.4 points, 5.2 rebounds, 3.6 assists and 2.5 steals per game as a senior. A fellow All-Region 5-4A selection for the 23-7 Trojans, Moss averaged 10.8 points, 4.4 rebounds, 2.4 assists and 2.0 steals an outing this past season.
Making the short move to the Scooba campus from Macon’s Noxubee County High School is 6-foot-7, 200-pound forward Earnest Hunter. A two-year starter for head coach T.J. Billups’ Tigers, Hunter averaged 14 points and 10 rebounds as a senior along with ranking second in the state with an average of four blocked shots per contest a year ago.
From the Golden Triangle region, the Lions have inked Starkville native James Evans (6-7, 210) for the coming season. Having played briefly for head coach Greg Carter’s Starkville Yellow Jackets in 2008-09 before moving to Kentucky, Evans most recently averaged around 16 points and nine rebounds per game as a junior at Lexington’s Bryan Station High School to earn honorable mention all-city honors in 2009-10.
Along with their four in-district high school signees, the Lions will welcome three out-of-state prospects to the EMCC campus in 2011-12. Transfer forward Colin Borchert (6-8, 220) headlines this talented trio after having averaged 16.4 points, 6.2 rebounds and 2.1 blocks per contest as a freshman at Yavapai College in Prescott, Ariz. Borchert also posted shooting percentages of 47 percent overall from the field, 40 percent from three-point range and 71 percent from the line in 2009-10 to garner third-team all-league laurels in the Arizona Community College Athletic Conference as a collegiate rookie.
Out of the neighboring state of Alabama, EMCC has nabbed left-handed point guard Jalen Houston (6-1, 180) from state champion Hillcrest High School in Tuscaloosa. A three-year starter and honorable mention all-state playmaker for head coach Scott Suttles, Houston averaged 15.2 points and 2.3 steals per outing in directing the 32-3 Patriots to the 2010-11 Class 6A state championship.
Most recently, the Lions signed swing player Micah Walker (6-5, 190) out of Jonesboro (Ark.) High School. A two-time all-conference performer for head coach Wes Swift’s Golden Hurricane ballclub, Walker was averaging a team-leading 12.5 points per game and hitting 47 percent of his 3-pointers this past year before sustaining a season-ending leg injury late in the year.
“Overall, this is the most talented recruiting class we’ve had since I’ve been here at EMCC,” noted White, last year’s NJCAA Region 23 and MACJC Men’s Basketball Coach of the Year who is entering his fifth season with the Lions. “(Assistant) Coach (Billy) Begley did an unbelievable job recruiting and deserves a lot of credit for this top recruiting class. We believe we have signed a good mixture of true big guys, versatile big guys, playmaking guards and shooters, who should be able to fit into our style of play as well as blend together as a cohesive unit.”
The 2011-12 EMCC Lions look to return seven players, including two starters and two key reserves, from last year’s 25-5 team that participated in the NJCAA Tournament for the second straight year as two-time reigning NJCAA Region 23 champions. While having also claimed back-to-back MACJC North Division regular-season titles, the Lions are a combined 52-12 overall and 22-2 in league play over the past two seasons.
|Last Updated ( Friday, 03 June 2011 )|
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