Iziah Purvey

Iziah Purvey and the Webster Groves Statesmen have a tough battle against Mille Career Academy on Saturday during the Show Me Champions Classic at Vashon. Purvey, a junior, is averaging 14.5 points a game.

Vashon High and Staley High from Kansas City are outstanding high school basketball teams and favorites to win state championships in their respective classes in March.

The Wolverines are two-time Class 4 state champions, and Staley returned a strong nucleus from last season's Class 6 Final Four team. Both teams have been tested by rugged schedules against talented teams from outside the state of Missouri.

On Saturday evening, these teams will square off in the featured game of the Show Me Champions Classic at Vashon. The Vashon-Staley showdown is the marquee game of a six-game event that features top teams from Missouri, Illinois, and Tennessee. Tipoff is at 7:30 p.m.

 Vashon had taken its share of lumps early this season against its national schedule, but the Wolverines have put things together as they came up with two big victories over the weekend. Vashon defeated nationally ranked Huntington Prep (WV) last Friday night, then followed up with a win over a strong Modesto Christian (CA) team on Saturday at the Quincy Shootout in Illinois.

The Wolverines are led by 6'6" senior forward Kennard Davis Jr., who is headed to Southern Illinois next season. Seniors Jayden Nicholson and Jordan Logan are also strong veterans while sophomores Christian Williams and Trey Williams are talented young players.

 Staley has been rolling through much of its season behind a talented group of seniors, who are headed to Division I schools next season. Senior point guard Kyan Evans recently became the school's career scoring leader.

He is headed to Colorado State. The Falcons also feature a strong front court with 6'7" senior Kayden Fish and 6'9" senior Cameron Manyawu, who are headed to Iowa State and Indiana State, respectively.

Here is a look at the rest of the schedule for Saturday's Show Me Champions Classic.

Hazelwood Central vs. West Memphis (AR), noon - Hazelwood Central is led by 6'2" junior guard Travis Green III, who is averaging 13.4 points a game, along with 6'3" senior guard Jhordan Covington-Berry. West Memphis has a strong tradition in boys’ basketball that goes back to the 1980's. 

Webster Groves vs. Miller Career Academy, 1:30 p.m. - Webster Groves features one of the top juniors in the area in 6'4" forward Iziah Purvey, who is averaging 14.5 points a game. The Statesmen also feature senior guards RJ Trevino and CJ Lang. Career Academy has a talented senior guard in 6'0" Charles Nelson, who is averaging 16 points a game. Senior guard Nehemiah Reedus is averaging 12.2 points a game while 6'4" junior Antione Franklin is averaging 10 points.

Charleston vs. St. Mary's, 3 p.m. - Charleston comes in as the defending Class 3 state champions. The Bluejays are talented with all five starters averaging in double figures. They are led by 6'1" sophomore PJ Farmer, who is averaging 19 points a game. The Bluejays also feature 6'3" senior Rico Coleman, who is averaging 15.6 points and 6'1" guard Trey Stanback, who is averaging 13.8 points. St. Mary's has a talented backcourt duo in sophomore Zyree Collins and senior Kaliel Boyd. Collins is averaging 23.8 points a game while Boyd is averaging 14.6 points. 

Chicago Simeon vs. Cape Girardeau Central, 4:30 p.m. - Chicago Simeon (18-1) fields one of the top teams in the country. They feature 6'8" twins Miles and Wesley Rubin, who are headed to Loyola of Chicago and Northern Iowa, respectively. Senior point guard Jalen Griffith is also a main contributor. Cape Central is currently 18-0 and ranked No. 1 in Missouri Class 5. The Tigers are led by 6'8" senior Cameron Williams, who is averaging 20 points a game. They also feature 6'4" junior Jay Reynolds and a talented pair of freshmen in 6'3" Marquell Murray and 6'6" Ty Edwards.

Chaminade vs Chicago Whitney Young, 6 p.m. - Chaminade enters the week with a 14-3 record. The Red Devils feature a strong senior backcourt in 6'3" Nilivan Daniels and 6'0" BJ Ward. Daniels is averaging 21.8 points a game while Ward is averaging 13.4 points. Ward has signed with SEMO. Whitney Young is led by 6'0" senior guard Dalen Davis, who has committed to Penn, and 6'6" senior forward Daniel Johnson.

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