Sunday, January 4, 2009

Killeen High School 89 San Antonio Antonian 64

2012 P 6'8" Jerred Kite of Antonian HS 2011 P 6'7" Jonathan Holmes of Antonian HS 2009 P 6'9" Cory Jefferson led Killen with 31 points. He's flanked by 2010 G Ja'Corie Baker and 2009 G Titus Barnes who also tallied 14 for the Kangaroos. It took all of 2 minutes for a healthy crowd at Antonian HS to realize that the home team had no chance against Coach Fossett's Killeen Runnin' Roos. However, not many left early as they soon realized they were witnessing a special player doing his thing in their gym.

2009 P 6'9" Baylor signee Cory Jefferson's tallied 5 vicious dunks in the 1st quarter as he manhandled the young Antonian Bigs down low. If he wasn't tearing the rim down on the offensive end he was altering and beating up shots on the defensive glass. After a total of 8 dunks, 7 blocks and double digit rebounds and a total of 31 points later Jefferson retired to the bench for most of the 4th quarter as he gave way to his younger team mates. Baylor is getting a good one in the long, athletic Jefferson.

The other story though was Antonian's young post tandem of 2011 P 6'7" Holmes and 2012 P 6'8" Jerred Kite. Holmes finished with 19 points. He has a great basketball body and a soft touch, even hitting a three from the perimeter. I caught up to his Pops after the game, an old hand like myself who played his college football back in the day for the Nebraska Cornhuskers and subsequently also found out that his daughter is hooping for D-1 Southeast Missouri State. So, there's no shortage of pedigree with young Holmes. He'll be added to our recruiting database later today.

The thing that struck me most though was the meeting of the Senior Jefferson and the Freshman Kite. it seemed like only yesterday, although it was 5 years ago that I saw a skinny 8th grader that could barely walk and chew gum when Jefferson came to play in one of our middle school tournaments in Austin. There was something about him though, that you just knew one day would become a finished product at the highest level. I had the honor of him being in the Texas D-1 Ambassadors organization for the next 4 plus years where he began to come into his own. A three year starter at Killeen HS, he paired during the summer of 2007 with North Carolina signee John Henson to be the toughest duo in the Class of 2009 playing together on the circuit with the D-1 Ambassadors. Jefferson finished his career with appearances at Reebok U, Nike Jamboree, Amare Stoudamire's Nike Top 20 Camp, and an invitation to LeBron James Nike Camp.

Kite has this kind of potential. Reed thin at 6'8", the youngster lacks strength to be sure. However, in the mold of European Bigs he has a soft touch not only around the goal, but more importantly in the face up game as he extends himself to 8-12-15 feet and even to the three point line with a soft stroke. Overmatched down low by Jefferson the young frosh faced up, extended his game and ended up tallying 17 points while getting major minutes for the Antonian Apaches.

After the game, Jefferson came over and shook hands with me. I told him I am proud of the player he has become and the kind of person he is. As Killen went to their bus, I stoood with young Kite took his picture and realized a torch had been passed in this never ending evaluation and recruitment process of young players.