The Phenom HoopState Championship brings you some of the best teams that haven’t competed for a state championship in the NCHSAA and NCISAA, all under one building to compete for a title. Last year, Moravian Prep took home the title but this year, it looks to be even deeper and it is anyone’s ball game. To get geared up for the event, we want to preview some of the matchups you will see on Friday, with much more coverage coming.
Our first matchup comes between Combine Academy and Quality Education. Starting off, Combine Academy has been recognized as one of the top teams in the state all year long and comes in nationally-ranked. And if you have seen them in action this season, you can see why as they are loaded with Division I talent. You start with 2023 sophomore Robert Dillingham leading the way, but you have the likes of 2022 AJ Smith, 2021 Michael Dudley, 2022 Omarion Bodrick, 2022 Patrick Wessler, 2021 Jacori Owens, 2022 Bryce Alfino, 2021 Kris Robinson, and others… all of which you will see playing at the next level. They come in waves and they are led by their leader in head coach, Jeff McInnis.
On the other end, you have Quality Education, a program that has been coming along all season long and would love to shake up the tournament early on. And let me tell you this, they aren’t coming in with an underdog mentality… this is a team that will come in thinking they could and should win. TJ Mills has played extremely well leading the way, but you also have competitors such as 2022 Anthony Sellars, 2022 Camian Shell, 2022 Omari Bolden, and others that should be household names throughout the state of North Carolina.
I can tell you now though, this is going to be a game you will WANT TO WATCH to start the tournament, as both will be coming in geared up and ready to roll. Talent on both ends, high-flyers out in transition, and players that will be playing at the next level, this has everything you want and this is the No. 1 vs. No. 8 seed matchup… that is just how loaded this event is.
These two teams met not long ago as Combine took home the 69-50 victory and lets not think that QEA has forgotten about it. Combine Academy though will be coming in FOCUSED and ready for a championship run, so this should be a fun one to watch.