NEUMANN-GORETTI, Philadelphia (22--6) Point guard Antonio (Scoop) Jardine and
power forward Rick Jackson have been best friends since seventh grade and will
still be playing together at the next level, since they've committed to
Syracuse. But before they play for the Orange, Jardine and Jackson are going
for a third consecutive Philadelphia Catholic League title.
12. LAKE OSWEGO,
Lake Oswego, Ore. (26--3) The Lakers are led by UCLA-bound senior power forward
Kevin Love (below), who averaged 29 points and 17 rebounds last year. Also back
is senior point guard Ernie Spada, a four-year starter, and senior guard Taylor
Los Angeles (25--7) The Comets won their seventh L.A. City Section championship
in nine years last season. Coach Ed Azzam has three solid seniors--wing Dane
Suttle, guard Isaiah Jenkins and forward Jesse Griffin--and freshman
guard-forward Dwayne Polee Jr.
14. CHRIST THE
KING, Middle Village, N.Y. (25--5) The Royals aren't big, but they are
talented. They're led by the backcourt of senior Malik Boothe (St. John's) and
junior Erving Walker, both of whom are 5'8".
COUNTRY DAY, Jacksonville (27--3) The Apaches won their second consecutive
Class 2A state crown last year but lost center Jason Bennett ( Kansas State) and
point guard Josue Soto ( Florida State). Senior forward A.J. Stewart ( Kentucky)
averaged 17 points last year and was the state tournament MVP.
Detroit (23--4) The Huskies made it to the Class A state semifinals last year,
and with three starters back they could go all the way this season. Leading the
charge is senior guard Corperryale Harris ( Michigan), who averaged 25 points
Marietta, Ga. (29--2) Senior power forward J.J. Hickson ( N.C. State) is a
tremendous worker, and the same can be said for the entire Wildcats squad,
which is why they're strong contenders for the Class AAAAA state crown. Hickson
averaged 20 points last season and gives the Wildcats tremendous power up front
when paired with senior forward Trey Lang.
Brooklyn (29--4) With combo sophomore guard Lance Stephenson, who averaged 19.5
points last year, back, the Railsplitters should challenge for a state
CENTRAL, Indianapolis (20--4) Guard Eric Gordon ( Indiana) averaged 26.1 points,
5.5 rebounds and 3.5 assists last year, but North Central is more than a
one-man show, thanks to seniors Adnan Hodzic and Kevin Gant and juniors Chris
Toler and James Hollowell.
Pittsburgh (30--2) A loss in the Class AAAA finals last year snapped its
30-game winning streak, which should be motivation enough for its four
returning starters, led by power forward DeJuan Blair (Pitt), who averaged 17
points and 12 rebounds last year.