has erupted for 85 points in two Class 4A Illinois state playoff basketball games as he continues to prove that he is one of the premier junior guards in the nation.
Though only 5-foot-11 and 160 pounds, the East Aurora (Aurora, Ill.) dynamo scored 40 points against Naperville Central and then topped it with 45 during a 76-68 overtime regional victory against Neuqua Valley, which had lost just twice previously. He also had seven steals and six assists.
Most remarkable, though, was his string of 23 straight points for the Tomcats (19-9). He was unstoppable as he scored their final 17 in regulation and the first six in overtime.
"He took advantage of their defense and did a great job of taking the ball to the basket,” East Aurora coach Wendell Jeffries said. “He’s the best ball handler I’ve ever coached. He can get to the basket with either hand better than any player I’ve ever seen except for Michael Jordan.
“He has very good quickness and great leaping ability. He can dunk the ball in lots of different ways. He’s also our leading rebounder. He’s really worked hard on his 3-point shot, but he needs to work more on it.”
Boatright, who committed to USC before his freshman year of high school but later pulled back on that pledge, is averaging 26 points, six rebounds and five assists. His high game is 47 points.
Jeffries said that colleges who have come to watch his uncommitted star play this year include Kentucky, Miami, Providence, Wake Forest, New Mexico State and Virginia Tech.
* Michigan’s No. 1-ranked Class A team, Romulus (Romulus, Mich.), nipped its No. 1-ranked Class B team, Detroit Country Day (Beverly Hills, Mich.), 56-54, before a packed house which included Bo Ryan of Wisconsin, Thad Matta of Ohio State and assistant coaches from Duke, Kentucky and Purdue, according to the The Detroit News. All eyes were on the losers’ 6-foot-10 Amir Williams, who was held to 12 points and seven rebounds.
* Junior Chris Jones scored 42 points as Melrose (Memphis, Tenn.) whipped White Station (Memphis, Tenn.), 83-60, to win the Class AAA region title. The losers’ standout guard, Joe Jackson, was held to 12 points.
* Kedren Johnson, a 6-4 junior guard, scored 44 points as Marshall County (Lewisburg, Tenn.) defeated Spring Hill, 67-61.
* Rochester (Rochester, Ind.) edged a young Culver Academies (Culver, Ind.) squad, 66-62, in overtime by holding 7-1 junior Cheir Ajou to nine points. However, Culver’s 6-1 sophomore, Jermaine Myers, almost turned the tables with an outstanding 41-point performance.
* Even though he missed about four minutes following a fall, 6-1 senior guard Aaron Toomey poured in 51 points as Bishop McGuinness (Kernersville, N.C.) outlasted Cherryville, 101-98, in two overtimes. He also had 10 rebounds and six assists.
* Issac Wilson scored 43 points as Corbin (Corbin, Ky.) defeated Bell County, 88-80, in a four-overtime thriller.
* In Oklahoma, Silo (Silo, Okla.) defeated Gore, 83-75, in five overtimes.
* Not even severe dehydration earlier in the day kept Jalen Steele from scoring a career-high 46 points as Fulton (Knoxville, Tenn.) defeated Carter, 86-80. The 6-3 Auburn signee drilled 15-of-25 shots from the field, including 6-of-11 from 3-point land.
* Larry Lewis, a 6-4 sophomore guard, has made a commitment to the University of Southern California, according to Richard Obert of the Arizona Republic. Lewis averaged 23 points and eight rebounds for Arcadia (Phoenix, Ariz.).
* Jim Yerkovich of Judge Memorial (Salt Lake City, Utah) has retired as the winningest boys basketball coach in Utah history with 634 victories in a brilliant 44-year career. He won three Class 3A state titles and sent over 50 players to Division I colleges.
* La Salle (Cincinnati, Ohio) rolled past Northwest, 77-40, to give coach Dan Fleming his 300th victory.
Moser wins No. 600, seventh title
Saturday was a day that Dianne Moser never will forget.
She coached Tongue River (Dayton, Wyo.) to a 55-38 basketball victory over Big Horn in Wyoming’s Class 2A state championship game. It was her 600th career victory and seventh state title as the only girls coach (36 years) in school history.
It also snapped a 43-game winning streak for Big Horn, which had won the previous two state titles and beaten Tongue River (23-5) in three close games previously this season.
* Sarah Imovbioh, a 6-2 junior, poured in 53 points, but St. Anne's-Belfield (Charlottesville, Va.) still suffered a 64-60 loss to Hampton Roads Academy (Newport News, Va.). Freshman point guard Adrienne Motley paced the winners with 31 points, 11 rebounds and eight steals. The 5-9 Motley earlier had a 55-point outing.
* Erica Ousley, a 5-6 senior, tied her career high with 42 points – including 28-of-32 at the free throw line - as Fairley (Memphis, Tenn.) slipped past Manassas, 89-83, in three overtimes.
* Six-foot senior Tricia Liston, a Duke signee, scored 40 points as Fenwick (Oak Park, Ill.) defeated Hersey, 55-51, to place third in the Illinois Class 4A state tournament.
* In Mississippi, senior guard Breanna Lewis scored 41 points to lead Greenville past Harrison Central, 60-55.
* Seward (Seward, Neb.) defeated Gretna, 68-45, to win Nebraska’s Class B state title and close the year with a 50-game winning streak. Alyssa Kamphaus, a 6-4 center headed for Creighton University, set the pace with 28 points and 12 rebounds.
* Six-foot-four junior Lauren Tibbs set school records earlier this year with 48 points and 22 rebounds as Scott (Covington, Ky.) defeated Covington Holmes, 89-59. The previous record of 42 points was set by her coach, Rhonda Klette, in the 1978-79 season.
*Another Kentucky star, senior Samantha Drake, scored 41 points as Nelson County (Bardstown, Ky.) beat Hart County, 62-49.
* In New Jersey, Camden Catholic (Cherry Hill, N.J.) defeated Red Bank Catholic, 57-46, to give coach Chris Palladino her 500th victory in 25 years.
* After winning 389 games in 18 years as head coach at Male (Louisville, Ky.), Leslie Scully is retiring to become Male’s assistant athletic director.
Nemec makes wrestling history
Crestwood (Mantua, Ohio) senior Paige Nemec made history last week by becoming the first girl to qualify for the Ohio boys state wrestling tournament and by winning one match.
After losing her first match (8-0) at 103 pounds, Nemec defeated John Martin of Wapakoneta, 3-0, in the consolation round. She then lost her final match (3-1), just missing a chance to place no lower than eighth. Nemec, who was given a standing ovation by a crowd estimated at 10,000, posted an impressive career record of 115-34.
* Bullock Creek (Midland, Mich.) senior Ryen Nieman won Michigan’s Division 3 state title at 135 pounds to finish his outstanding career with 175 consecutive victories – the No. 8 streak in high school history. Ranked No. 1 in the country by Amateur Wrestling News, the three-time state champ was 59-0 this year and 229-6 in his career.
* The nation’s No. 1-ranked 119-pounder, Ryak Finch of Safford (Safford, Ariz.), won Arizona’s Class 3A state title, finishing the year at 56-0 and his career at 203-2. He will attend Iowa State.
* Matt DelGallo of Gardiner (Gardiner, Maine) is only the 14th wrestler in Maine history to win four state titles. This year he captured the Class B crown at 125 pounds and finished his career with a school-record 165 victories.
* Jimmy Lawson of Manchester was named the outstanding wrestler at the New Jersey state tournament and is only the second three-time heavyweight champion.
* Apple Valley (Apple Valley, Minn.) won the Class AAA state title for a record 18th time and had a record seven individual champions. Tied for the nation’s No. 1 ranking – and called possibly the best team in state history - the 41-0 Eagles will return 11 of their 14 starters next year.
* Graham (St. Paris, Ohio) - tied with Apple Valley for the nation’s top ranking – won its 10th consecutive Ohio Division II state title with six individual champions. The Division I crown went to Wadsworth, which ended Lakewood St. Edward’s 13-year reign.
National honor to Reid
Dutchtown (Geismar, La.) senior safety Eric Reid has been named winner of the prestigious Franklin D. Watkins Award, which annually goes to the nation’s No. 1 African-American high school scholar/athlete.
Reid, an LSU signee who has a superb 4.7 GPA in accelerated classes, made 56 tackles last fall with five interceptions.
Coach Benny Saia calls the 6-3, 230-pound speedster “the total package – by far the most decorated player we’ve had here (in the school’s eight-year history).”
* The Austin Statesman reports that Texas Tech received a big-time football commitment last week from Lake Travis (Austin, Texas) quarterback Michael Brewer. As a junior, Brewer threw for 4,450 yards and 43 touchdowns as Lake Travis posted a 16-0 record and won the Class 4A-Division I state title.
* Carmel (Carmel, Ind.) football coach Mo Moriarity has taken a position as an assistant at Indiana University. Moriarity, who coached Carmel and Bloomington South to a combined three Class 5A state titles, previously had been an Indiana assistant from 2002-04.
Hurtado to have surgery
Nick Hurtado went through a truly emotional moment when he threw out the ceremonial first pitch for the Santiago (Corona, Calif.) baseball team. The talented senior left-hander, who signed with Cal State Fullerton, has been diagnosed with a cancerous tumor in his right knee and will miss the entire season.
According to Eric Sondheimer of the Los Angeles Times, Hurtado must undergo three months of chemotherapy, have surgery to remove part of his kneecap and insert a rod in his leg. Six more months of chemotherapy will follow.
* Senior right-hander T.J. Kendzora fired a no-hitter with 12 strikeouts and just one walk as El Toro (Calif.) blanked Riverside J.W. North, 2-0. Unfortunately the walk – to the leadoff batter in the top of the seventh on a 3-2 count - ruined his bid for a perfect game.
Priessman wins Supergirl Cup
Lexie Priessman of Cincinnati, Ohio, won the all-around championship during the first annual Nastia Liukin Supergirl Cup gymnastics competition in Worcester, Mass. The 13-year-old standout finished with a score of 38.400. Most of the 36 entries from 17 states were ages 15-18.
Kassandra Lopez (Tucson, Ariz.) placed second with a score of 37.675, while third place went to Diandra Milliner (Andover, Kan.) with 37.400.
* Rebecca Bross of Plano, Texas, won the women’s all-around title with 60.55 points during Tyson American Cup competition in Worcester, Mass.
Parr pitches no-hitter
In Alabama, eighth grader Katie Parr fired a softball no-hitter with 15 strikeouts as Tabernacle Christian routed Florence Christian Academy, 13-0. She also collected a triple, double and two singles.
* Grey Adams struck out 17 as Fairhope (Ala.) edged Jackson, 4-3.