Asheville Christian has done its thing up in the mountains. They are tucked away just outside of Asheville, in Swannanoa but have put together competitive teams over the last few years under the guidance of Head Coach Andy Ray.

Last year, Asheville Christian made it to the second round of the 2A state playoffs behind a 34 point and 6 assists showing from Jordan Shepard. Shepard, a 6’3 point guard returns this year as the reigning conference player of the year.

Having graduated 6’10” center Jeff McIlwain, now hooping at UNC Pembroke, Asheville Christian returns its other four starters as well as brings in an impact transfer. Still up in the mountains, look for more noise to be made starting at the Phenom High School Jamboree on November 7.

The Star
There is no doubting that this team will go as far as 6’3” 2016 Jordan Shepard will take them. Shepard is a long and explosive point guard who plays at a great pace and gets into the paint at will. During April Shepard picked up 10 or so offers, before his recruitment hit a snag after a team switch in July. He has his visits set up to Boston University, Furman, and Wofford, however, he should see some more schools come back into the picture. Shepard is a top 15 player in North Carolina’s deep 2016 class, and one that will garner high recruitment if he is seen.

The Transfer
New to the team is 6’7” 2018 Chris Clayton. Clayton is a transfer from McDowell HS where he averaged around 12 points per game last season. Clayton is a player most have not heard of, but made a name for himself playing on the 17U Team Vision team. Clayton is a blue collar type big that has monster explosion and sets great screens. He has no ego and knows what he is as a player. Expect Clayton’s to be a name you hear a lot of moving forward.

The Piece
6’5” 2016 Michael Steward is a high level kid in the classroom having scored a 35 on his ACT. However, he is also a kid that can put the ball in the bucket on the court. Already visited by numerous D3 schools, they are fighting against high academic schools who are offering big academic scholarship money. Steward is a long kid, with good range. He averaged around 11 points per game on the team last year and should look for that number to increase this year. Steward is a great kid, with good range, and sneaky athleticism.

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