On our trips to high school programs this past month, Phenom Hoops has been able to take a glimpse at several intriguing and rising prospects around the state and region. When we headed out to Kings Mountain, we got a glimpse of a rising sophomore guard that brings a lot to the table as well as potential.
2022 5’11 Isaiah Tate is a prospect looking to make his mark this upcoming season for the Mountaineers. After a very good freshman season in which he averaged 9.4 points and 1.8 assists in 27 games last year and with the senior losses from last season for Kings Mountain, Tate will be looked at as one of the go-to players this year.
We recently got in touch with Tate to see what the latest is around his preparation for this season and recruitment, as we bring you another Phenom Hoops Q&A.
Preparing for a big sophomore season:
Head coach Grayson Pierce is coming off another successful season, finishing 21-7 and making another deep run in the playoffs. His team was led by two fantastic seniors in Zeke Littlejohn and Eli Paysour, both of which are now gone.
Now, Pierce is looking for a nice blend of experience and young talent. And one of those young talents that will be relied on this year is Isaiah Tate. Tate has been preparing himself for this upcoming season, working hard this offseason and focusing on the opportunity ahead of him.
“Basketball has been great and intense during this offseason,” he told Phenom Hoop Report. “I am up at 5 a.m. before school, four days out of the week, working on my individual game and during school, building chemistry with my teammates. My focus and mindset are to be a strong leader on and off the court. My goal is to continue to work outside my comfort zone to be unpredictable heading into the season. I am excited about this season with my coaches and teammates.”
His production and dependability will be key if Kings Mountain wants to make another deep run in the playoffs. Tate’s ability to knock down shots all over the court, as well as use his handles to his spots certainly make him a prime target as a breakout player this season in North Carolina.
“I hope to provide strong leadership and to be a strong playmaker for my teammates by providing high energy and motivation.”
Interest is starting to pick up for Tate:
The sophomore guard hasn’t earned an offer YET but that doesn’t mean college coaches have made their way out to Kings Mountain to check on the skilled guard and his development.
Temple, UNC-Wilmington, Boston University, USC-Upstate, Charlotte, Gardner-Webb, Radford, and North Carolina A&T have all expressed interest his way and he just recently took a visit Appalachian State, a visit he truly enjoyed and learned more about the program.
“It was great visiting Appalachian State,” he said. “I enjoyed touring the campus. The coaches provided information on academics and athletic expectations. It was a great program. The other schools have told me they like my game and the way I play. They like the way I hold the ball and shoot it. I’m working on dates to visit other schools.”
Coach Pierce on Tate:
“Isaiah is one of the hardest-working players I have coached. He is a gym rat. He is the guy that is always getting extra reps in. On the court, Isaiah brings a very high basketball IQ. He knows how to score the ball and he is a great 3-point shooter. He has a very quick first step which allows him to get by his defender. He is a very good ball-handler and he has a very good pull-up jumper, as well as he is really starting to get his floater down. He is a really hard guard and plays with a lot of confidence.”