Thursday, October 29, 2015

Grovetown Middle opens the season with a bang!

The basketball season officially tipped off Tuesday. Many watched or heard about Stephen Curry's 24 point first quarter explosion in the defending NBA champion Golden State Warriors' home opener versus the Pelicans.

But on the same day a far less publicized, yet every bit as exciting, battle went down on the opening day of the Columbia County middle school hoops schedule.  In its home opener against Columbia Middle, Grovetown Middle trotted out an imposing front line that included 6'4" Chris Williams, a transfer from Texas, and 6'2" seventh grader Rickey McGhee. The Patriots dominated the paint, but Columbia's Christian Chambers did his best Steph Curry impersonation, draining 5 threes in a game that featured two lead changes in the final minute before Grovetown's Williams sealed his team's 31-30 win with a basket in the final seconds.

Williams and McGhee combined to score 25 of Grovetown's 31 points, and Chambers tallied 20 of Columbia's 30.  Williams adds athleticism and touch around the basket to his 6'4" frame.  Setting up Williams's game winner was set up by McGhee's late three that cut Columbia's lead to 28-27.

Chambers was probably the game's most impressive player.  Five threes is a lot in any game, especially one lasting 24 minutes.  He also attacked the basket, created opportunities for teammates, grabbed rebounds, and made key defensive plays to come within seconds of securing a road win.

Grovetown coach Dan Sneeringer told me Tuesday's game was the most exciting contest he's coached in 16 years. Marcus Curry, the AAU coach of many players in the game, agreed, calling it "a great way to start the season." My feelings exactly! Watching Steph Curry play Tuesday was certainly a treat. But I got just as much enjoyment watching Williams, McGhee, and Chambers bring in the new season of AugBball action with a bang!

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