The 2018 portion of the high school basketball schedule begins with a tremendous event in the Highland Shootout.
The seven-game showcase takes place on Saturday at Highland High School. It features top programs from all across the state of Missouri and Illinois. Here is a look at the seven matchups.
Highland vs. Lebanon (girls), 10 a.m. – Highland is paced by an excellent backcourt in 5’6” sophomore Ellie Brown and 5’6” senior Rece Portell. Undefeated Lebanon is led by 5’5” senior Kendra Bass, 5’9” junior Emily Reinneck and 6’1” senior Madison Schoenfeld.
Edwardsville vs. Kansas City Rockhurst, 11:30 a.m. – Edwardsville has one of the top scoring threats in the metro area in senior guard Jack Marinko, who is averaging 27 points game. Rockhurst is one of the top teams in the Kansas City area. The Hawklets are led by smooth 6’2” senior guard Xavier Rhodes.
Whitfield vs. Carbondale, 1 p.m. – Whitfield features 6’5” guard Torrence Watson, the University of Missouri signee, who is one of the top scorers in the St. Louis metro area. Carbondale has a potent tandem in 6’3” guard Darius Beane (SIU signee) and 6’5” Kani Acree (Ball State signee).
Highland vs. Columbia, 3:30 p.m. – The host Bulldogs are one of the best teams in the Mississippi Valley Conference, led by 6’4” junior Sam Laporta and 6’3” junior Jake Kruse. Columbia has one of the top guards in the metro east in 6’1” senior Jordan Holmes.
Belleville West vs. Poplar Bluff, 4:45 p.m. – Belleville West is coming off winning the championship of the Centralia Tournament. The Maroons are led by 6’7” junior forward E.J. Liddell, who is one of the top players in the state of Illinois. Senior guard Malachi Smith is a Wright State signee who is very talented. Poplar Bluff just won its own Poplar Bluff Showdown with an upset victory over Jonesboro, Arkansas. in the finals. The Mules are led by bullish 6’3” junior forward Dominique Hardimon.
Chaminade vs. Chicago Morgan Park, 6:30 p.m. – A tremendous matchup featuring a top team from St. Louis against a Chicago area powerhouse program. Chaminade is a talented unit led by 6’7” senior Jericole Hellems, who has signed with North Carolina State. Morgan Park is led by 6’3” senior guard Ayo Dosunmu, who has signed with the University of Illinois. The 6’4” Dosunmu has already posted games of 61 and 50 points this season.
Vashon vs. Champaign Central, 8:15 p.m. – The two-time Class 4 state champions are a young and talented team that is paced by dynamic 6’1” junior guard Mario McKinney and 6’5” sophomore guard Cam’ron Fletcher. Champaign Central is led by 6’5” senior guard Tim Finke, who has signed with Grand Canyon.