Final Score: Mount Pleasant 71, South Stanly 60
Mount Pleasant handled their business in their season opening win over South Stanly possessing a serious size advantage over the opposition. There were points in the game where the average height on the court was 6’6, which is absolutely absurd for a 2A Public School team, Head Coach George Walker will have a multitude of lineups to use this season as the Tigers look to be a team with some serious State Championship Aspirations. South Stanly looks to be a very formidable 1A team with some really versatile pieces that should lead them to a successful season as a 1A Playoff contender. Let’s take a look at some of the standouts.
Mount Pleasant High School
6’9 2019 Ryan Bonnett: (18 Pts, 13 Reb, 9 Blks)
Bonnett was simply sensational in this contest, effecting nearly every shot on the defensive side protecting the rim, finishing dump-off passes from Keim Moore in the paint, and dominating the glass on both ends. He showed that he should be considered a sure fire Scholarship prospect that should attract serious interest from Higher level D2 and Lower-Mid level D1 coaches throughout the region. He showed touch from the mid-range, excellent leadership abilities on the defensive end, and excellent shot selection. He’s clearly the heart and soul of this group, he has a lot of opportunities basketball aside due to his insanely high level academic achievements, and showed he deserves some more opportunities as a basketball player.
6’0 2020 Keim Moore: 18 Pts, 5 Reb, 3 Ast
Keim Moore looks to be the perfect fit with his new team at Mount Pleasant due to his natural un-selfishness, ability to push in transition, and attract help from the defense leading to easy buckets for his bigs/wings. He has a really advanced in between game with his excellent touch on his runner, and was one for two from deep. He has the ball on a string at all times, and does a good job moving without the ball when it’s in the hands of one of the bigs, opening up even more opportunities as a catch and shoot guy. He’s another one that is a bonafide scholarship level talent that is clearly trending in the right direction as a prospect.
6’8 2021 Hunter Sloop: 8 Pts, 6 Reb, 5 Ast
Despite a some early foul trouble, Hunter Sloop still found a way to have a major contribution on the outcome of this game. He found a way to come up with timely baskets while also leading his team in assists, spending a lot of the night in the middle of a 2-3 zone in the high post, finding Ryan Bonnett for easy baskets down low. He’s an incredibly versatile forward that should begin to garner some serious attention as a prospect.
6’7 2022 Shane Fernald: 6 Pts, 8 Reb, 3 Ast, 2 Blk
Shane Fernald has been a hot name in what appears to be an absolutely loaded North Carolina 2022 class. He had a really strong High School debut last night, playing a key role off the bench in the victory. He played with a ton of energy, clearly feeding off the buzz in the building surrounding the season opener. That energy got him in some early foul trouble, but he found a way to do a little bit of everything out there. He played four different positions throughout the night, showcasing a little bit of something from each one, making plays for teammates on wing, anchoring the defense at the 5, and grabbing a ton of rebounds from the block. He’s a name to watch that should just get even better throughout the year.
5’11 2021 Jacob Price: 8 Pts
Price is a knockdown shooter that gives this group an excellent option off the ball. Showed that he’s capable of initiating offense in spots, and should have his share of big games this season.
6’0 2019 Bryson Efird: 5 Pts
Another knockdown shooter that brings a lot of leadership to the table for this group. Another key piece to a team that has a chance to be special.
6’5 2019 Brandon Smith: 6 Pts, 5 Reb, 3 Ast
Smith is an excellent utility player for this group that does whatever needed to do in order to come away with the win. He didn’t have his best shooting night, but still had a massive impact on the game and should garner attentions from D3’s within the region.
South Stanly High School
6’0 2019 Justin Gaddy: 13 Pts 3 Reb
Gaddy was a bright spot for South Stanly with his ability to knock down shots from the perimeter, it was much needed with the size advantage that Mount Pleasant had. He was a constant presence throughout, trying to make life difficult for the Mount Pleasant shooters, but it wasn’t quite enough.
6’1 2020 Jaquez Cooke: 3 Pts, 9 Reb, 7 Ast
Cooke is one of the best 6’1 rebounders that I’ve ever seen, he just grabs everything in his way and deserves major recognition for that. He’s a slasher at heart and the rim protection from Ryan Bonnett made life really difficult for him, he still found a way to find his shooters on the wing and finished the game with seven assists, luckily most of the teams he’ll face throughout the year won’t quite have that size and he can get back to getting buckets at the rack.