Combine vs. Moravian Prep
There have not been two more talked about programs in the state of North Carolina this offseason than Combine Academy and Moravian Prep. What makes this game so interesting is they are both “outlaw” programs within the state. Both of the rosters are loaded with players, the most notable being 6’5″ 2022 Jalen Hood Schifino, a consensus Top 25 prospect in his class and a Team USA guy, with Combine. Moravian is led by Top 50 2020 prospect Josh Hall and 6′ 2020 Shakeel Moore, who led the EYBL in steals this year.
For Combine Academy, along with superstar Hood-Schifino, watch for 6’9″ 2021 Jacari Owens, 2023 Robert Dillingham, 6’7″ 2021 Jamalyn Blakeney, 2021 Kris Robinson, 6’8″ 2023 Mekhi Grant among others. For Moravian Prep, along with stars Hall and Moore, watch for 6’3″ 2021 Darius Days, 6’10” 2020 Javarzia Belton, 6’5″ 2020 Jamahri Harvey, 6’9″ 2021 Jordan Wildy among others. Yes, all of these players have full scholarship offers, already in hand.
Look for this game to have a lot of fireworks, and in case you didn’t know, Jeff McInnis is patrolling the sidelines for Combine. This game will be a star-studded event, played against two of the top five programs in the Hoop State. Why would you not want to be front and center?!
Greensboro Day vs. Cannon
If you love guard play, this matchup is one for the ages. For Greensboro Day, you have the ACC backcourt duo of Cam Hayes (NC State) and Carson McCorkle (Virginia) along with Brock Williams and Jaydon Young vs. the consensus point guard in the country for the 2022 class, Jaden Bradley. Then add in Jarvis Moss along with frontcourt DJ Nix and Christian Reeves and you have a game where the starters off both teams are D1 prospects. Greensboro Day has been the top program in the state regardless of affiliation or class. Cannon has tremendous youth and talent and look to challenge for the top spot in the NCISAA 4A. Both teams are well-coached and do things the right way on and off the court.
The Burlington School vs. Northwood Temple ends a fantastic weekend
Saturday night, fans will want to stay to end the night in a big way, as The Burlington School matches up against Northwood Temple. Northwood lost a fantastic 1-2 punch from last year but trust us, they still bring some firepower back. 2020 6’6′ Reggie Raynor will get fans on their feet with his powerful, tough play, while 2022 Jaquante Harris and 2021 Manny Sepulvuda will be two names that should rise up rankings. That doesn’t mention long-range bomber Jay Hickman, as Northwood will continue racking up wins this year with the talent they have.
They will be going up against The Burlington School, a program that is coming into the year with a lot of talk and firepower. 2021 Ja’Dun Michael is a Top-100 type prospect that holds high-major offers around the country, as well as 6’10 big Kuluel Mading, who is exploding onto the scene as well. Rice commit 6’9 forward Mylyjael Poteat can eat up the boards, as well as wreak havoc in the post. These are just a few names to watch with this loaded program. This matchup though will just cap off the incredible weekend of basketball.
First Flight Vs Carmel Christian: A Dynamic Matchup
When you look at Carmel Christian you see success. They’re a winning program that consistently puts kids at the next level and they do an incredible job maintaining the image and results you love to see as a basketball program. First Flight doesn’t quite have the jewelry collection of Carmel Christian but they’ve gotten guys to the next level while playing a unique brand of basketball. They shoot 3s, a lot of 3s… they have the kind of formula that gives them a chance against bigger, more talented teams and Senior PG Dylan Blake is a huge reason behind that. Here’s a chance for Blake to showcase what he can do on a big stage against one of the states perennial powers. This Carmel squad lost five division one players from last years team but they’ve reloaded with a lot of young talent with the likes of Justin Taylor, Elijah Gray, and Ben Burnham. Can this First Flight team put an early-season scare into one of the state’s top programs? You’ll have to come out and see!
Holly Springs v. Carmel Christian: The Battle of New-Look Teams
When looking at the schedule for Phenom Hoops’ Gate City Classic, it’s pretty easy to get excited. Teams like Greensboro Day, Moravian Prep, Combine Academy, along with various others certainly stand out as some of the most talented programs in the state. However, more folks should be talking about Holly Springs versus Carmel Christian. Why? Mainly because both of these teams have restructured or reloaded their personnel without skipping a beat. Carmel Christian sent their entire starting five from last season to Division I programs. Now, they will arguably be even more dynamic with additions like Justin Taylor, Glenn Bynum, and Ben Burnham while Myles Hunter, Kenny Gwynn, and Elijah Gray all assume bigger roles and more responsibility. As for Holly Springs, it just feels like people are placing an abundance of stock into the departure of Kadin Shedrick (Virginia) but forget that Dante Kisenhofer will immediately absorb all of his minutes and has a chance to be a special prospect in his own regard. Add him to Marcus Elliott (one of the most underrated guards in North Carolina) and Kaleb Scott (Georgia State commit), and this will be a dogfight. Scott and Kisenhofer against Gray and Burnham will be incredible and could be the determining factor in who takes this contest.