Green Wave, Panthers and Patriots gear up for holiday hoops

  • Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Roger Lee/Journal Scene Senior John Jenkins will lead the Green Wave into the Rotary Roundball Classic this week.

Tis the season to catch some high school hoops.

Tons of local high school basketball teams will take to the hardwood the next couple of weeks as Charleston hosts some very competitive and entertaining holiday tournaments.

The 21st annual Rotary Roundball Classic will feature 16 teams including some of the top local teams and teams from out of state.

Scheduled for Dec. 27-30 at North Charleston High School, located at 1087 East Montague Avenue in the old North Charleston business area, the tournament will feature eight games daily except for Sunday when teams will have an off day. Local participants will include Summerville, Goose Creek, Pinewood Prep, Academic Magnet, Charleston Collegiate, James Island Charter School, North Charleston, Porter-Gaud, Wando and West Ashley.

Teams traveling from out of the area to participate include Imhotep Charter School (Philadelphia), Linden High (New Jersey), North Gwinnett (Suwanee, Ga.), Buford (Ga.), St. John’s College High School (Washington, D.C.) and Wings Academy (New York).

“It is a great honor for our school to have been such a part of the history of the Roundball Tournament,” Pinewood Prep coach Pat Eidson said. “We look forward to participating again this year. It is always a tremendous challenge.”

Tickets are available at the games. A season ticket (all four days) is $20. A daily ticket is $8. For ticket information, contact Rich Farrell at 860-2502.

Opening day games include Imhotep Charter vs. Pinewood Prep (10 a.m.), Goose Creek vs. West Ashley (2:30 p.m.), St. John’s College High vs. North Charleston (7 p.m.) and

North Gwinnett vs. Summerville (8:30 p.m.).

The Panthers should get a good test right off the bat as Imhotep Charter has won four state championships in the last five years and returns six players from last year’s championship team. The team’s coach began this season with 215 career coaching victories, including 28 last winter.

Summerville also will open against stiff competition. North Gwinnett returns nearly every major contributor from a team that finished at 19-6 last season.

According to the Gwinnett Daily Post, North Gwinnett’s leading returning scorer averages nearly 15 points per game and he and three other returners each averaged more than 5 rebounds per game last year. Bulldog Coach Zack Smith has won 18 or more games the past three seasons and his 2011-12 team reached the state quarterfinals behind current Georgia Tech guard Chris Bolden.

The Roundball Classic benefits the Rotary Club of North Charleston scholarship program and Communities In Schools of the Charleston Area, Inc., which provides dropout-prevention service to nearly 10,750 students.

Modie Risher Tournament

Another boys’ tournament that has a strong tradition is the Modie Risher Tournament scheduled for Dec. 26-28 at Burke High School. This year participants include Fort Dorchester, Burke, Timberland, Manning, Beaufort and Baptist Hill.

Fort Dorchester coach Leon Wheaton has coached with and against many of the coaches who will be there for the 36th annual tournament and is expecting some good competition.

“My team is always excited about going to a tournament because it’s a time for them to spend time together and get to play some different teams,” Wheaton said. “Earl Brown at Baptist Hill is bringing his team so you might see them play us. I coached with him and he is like a father to me so I know he knows the game. It will be a good experience for the boys and hopefully it will help us build some momentum going toward region play.”

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