In the opening game at the Battle At The Rock Gray Collegiate handled Northwood Temple 90-63. A strong first quarter from 6’0 2019 Tommy Bruner and 6’4 2019 Jalil Robinson, Gray led 18-8 with Robinson attacking at will offensively and the entire team handling their business defensively, keying in on Josh Nickelberry, making him work for every inch early on. They held an 18-8 lead after the initial break.
In the 2nd Quarter the domination continued, Gray opened the quarter on a 16-6 run led by both Khalil and Jalil Robinson, along with Super Sophomore Chase McDuffie who lit it up shooting corner 3s in the 2nd frame. Josh Nickelberry and Jamarhi Harvey found a way to get the offense going a little bit, but simply could not get it done on the defensive end as Gray Collegiate scored 32 points in the frame. At the half it was 50-29 Gray Collegiate holding the lead. Josh Nickelberry led all scorers with 18 Pts.
The 3rd frame began really slowly with only three total points in the first three minutes of the game. Josh Nickelberry really started to get going for Northwood with 13 points in the 3rd Quarter alone, but it wasn’t enough as Jalil Robinson and Dallaz Corbitt started to assert their will on Northwood, especially on the block. Khalil Robinson continued to knock down his jumpers and keep the foot on the gas as at the end of the period it was 68-45, Gray Collegiate leading.
The 4th Quarter was another continued trend of Gray Collegiate Dominance, they shot 50% from the field and completely controlled the remainder of the game. They held Nickelberry to one point in the 4th quarter and won the game by the score of 90-63.
Three Stars of The Game:
1. 6’4 2019 Jalil Robinson: Gray Collegiate (9/13 From the Field, 3/6 from Three, 23 Pts, 8 Reb, 3 Ast)
Robinson displayed a unique wide ranging skillset throughout the contest as he shot the ball from distance at a high clip and showed off his court vision. He brings a high level of toughness to the court, embracing his matchup with Louisville Signee Josh Nickelberry, making him work for every inch and really making him work on the defensive end too with his ability to get downhill and attack the basket. He currently holds an offer from South Carolina State expect that list to grow if he can continue playing the way he did tonight.
2. 6’5 2019 Josh Nickelberry: Northwood Temple (Louisville Signee) (10/18 From The Field, 5/9 from Three, 7/11 From The Line, 30 Pts)
Nickelberry is a scoring machine, he continues to do it at a high rate with high levels of efficiency. His team obviously did not get the result the wanted tonight, but Nickelberry talked about how he could do better. “I could’ve started out more aggressively… I could’ve lead my team better, but we have another game tomorrow so we have to bounce back.” He has shown major personal growth over the past year both on and off the court and he should be a contender for Gatorade player of the year in North Carolina, as well as in the discussion for the post season All American games.
3. 6’1 2019 Tommy Bruner: Gray Collegiate (4/9 From the Field, 3/6 From Three, 4/4 from the Line, 15 Pts, 5 Reb, 4 Ast, 5 Stl, 1 TO)
Bruner was a defensive catalyst in this one, making life a living hell for whomever had the ball in front of him. He runs this team with a high level of toughness, making excellent decisions, maintaining complete control of his team throughout. He shot the ball exceptionally well, with good form, and he seemingly never takes a bad one. He’s a total team guy that should have a growing offer list if he continues to produce like this.