Jimmy McKinney

Congratulations to former Vashon High basketball star Jimmy McKinney, who was introduced as the new boys’ basketball coach at Kirkwood High last week.

McKinney was an All-Star player at Vashon, who led the Wolverines to state championships in 2000, 2001 and 2002. He was the Gatorade Player of the Year and Mr. Show-Me Basketball in Missouri after his senior year in 2002.He went on to have a very successful college career at the University of Missouri from 2004-07.

McKinney played professional basketball in Germany for a decade before returning home to St. Louis, where he entered the coaching ranks at his high school alma mater. He has been an assistant coach at Vashon on the staff with head coach Tony Irons, helping the Wolverines to numerous state championships. 

IWA standout gets new scholarship offers

*Class of 2022 girls’ basketball standout Saniah Tyler of Incarnate Word Academy has seen her recruiting interest increase after a very successful month of July with the Lady Brad Beal Elite 2021 team. The 5’7” point guard earned scholarship offers from Big Ten schools Iowa and Michigan. Tyler is currently the No. 1 player in the Prep Girls Hoops Missouri Class of 2022 rankings. 

Local boys basketball teams win championships

*A group of talented boys’ basketball teams from the St. Louis metro area have showed well in recent grassroots tournaments. The Gateway Basketball Club 15U team won championships in successive weekends. They won the championship at the Prep Hoops Havoc in the Heartland in Indianapolis, then they followed up with a title at the Gateway All-American Showcase in St. Charles.

The Gateway 15U team consists of many talented sophomores in the area. The members of the team include Nathan Bobikiewicz (Wentzville Liberty), Justin Duff (DeSmet), Marcus Coleman (Lutheran St. Charles), Cameron Lee (Duchesne), Nick Lewis (Whitfield), Zach Ortwerth (SLUH), Bryce Spiller (Chaminade), Jack Steinbach (Ladue), Mason Williams (Park Hills Central), Kobi Williams (Westminster).

The Southwest Illinois Jets Orange won championships at the Gateway All-American Tournament in the 15U and 16U age division. The members of the Jets 16U team are; Dawson Algee (O’Fallon), NJ Benson (Mt. Vernon), Caleb Burton (O’Fallon), Camren Edwards (Alton), Tevin Gowins (Hazelwood Central), Brylan Phillips (Decatur MacArthur), Mekhi Phillips (Lanphier), Lemond Shaw (DuBourg), Jamauri Winfrey (Peoria Richwoods).

The members of the Jets 15U Orange team include: Kemonte Rivers (Alton), Donovan Howard (Hazelwood Central), Kellen Scott (Pickneyville), Kirk Howard (Alton), Jordan Lumpkins (Trinity Catholic), Kendall Lavender (Alton Marquette), Dwayne Chatman Jr. (O’Fallon), Bryant Moore (Confluence Academy). 

Keontez Lewis commits to UCLA; Lovett to announce soon

East St. Louis Senior High football standout Keontez Lewis recently gave a verbal commitment to UCLA. The 6’2” 185-pound Lewis is a three-star recruit who is one of the top wide receiver prospects in the state of Illinois. As a junior, he caught 39 passes for 826 yards and 10 touchdowns as part of a powerful Flyers offensive unit that raced to the Illinois Class 6A state championship last fall.

Lewis’ teammate at East St. Louis, All-State wide receiver Dominic Lovett, announced that he plans on announcing his college decision on September 11. Lewis is a four-star prospect who is ranked among the top five prospects in the state of Illinois. He has a whole host of collegiate suitors, which include Missouri, Illinois, Alabama, Georgia, LSU, Oregon and many others. He had 1,536 yards receiving for 17 touchdowns as a junior last season. 

Check out Elite Amateur Sports

During this period of shelter in place, I’ve been able to check out the work of many young talented media members who have been getting it done on social medial. One group that you should check out is Elite Amateur Sports. The dynamic duo of Tyler Coleman and Dorian Brown do a tremendous job with the videography and sports talk on line. They have put up some great interviews with some of the top high school and collegiate athletes and coaches in the St. Louis area. Give them a look on twitter @eliteamsports or on their YouTube channel.

St. Louis American Sports Director

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