An eye-opening opener for Meadowcreek

Basketball season is long enough that it’s hard to look at any one game as a statement game, but Meadowcreek garnered some attention by thumping defending state champion Tift County 70-46 in the Elite 8 Tip-Off Classic at McEachern Saturday.

It was a big weekend for the Mustangs. Inside players Amari Kelly and Cory Hightower each signed with college programs on Friday according to Gwinnett Prep Sports. Kelly, a 6-foot-9 post player, inked with Duquesne University in Pittsburgh. Hightower, a 6-foot-7 forward, signed with University of Detroit Mercy.

Strong start for McEachern: Isaac Okoro notched 17 points for host McEachern in a 71-59 win over county rival Wheeler in the Elite 8 Tip-Off, shaking off an early 10-point deficit.

Looking to start a new streak:The DeKalb County School District had won at least one state basketball championship in each year from 2004 to 2016, claiming 16 girls titles and 15 boys titles), but last March none took home the big prize.

Pulling rank: The McEachern boys are No. 12 in the Maxpreps preseason rankings, the only Georgia school in the website’s Excellent 25 rankings. The Maxpreps computer poll has not been released. Norcross is rated No. 22 in the girls Excellent 25, while McEachern’s girls are No. 18 in the MaxPreps computer rankings.

More signings: Numerous players around the state took advantage of the early signing period for basketball, which began Nov. 8 and runs through Wednesday. The regular signing period for basketball is April 8 – May 16 for Division I.

Some of the prominent Georgia players who signed early (as confirmed by school press releases):

Boys
Jamie Lewis, Westlake, 6-foot-3 point guard, Wake Forest; Reggie Perry, Thomasville, 6-foot-9 forward, Mississippi State; Landers Nolley II, Langston Hughes, 6-foot-7 forward, Virginia Tech; Nelson Phillips, Warner Robins, 6-foot-5 guard, Georgia State; Kavonte Ivery, Stockbridge, 6-foot-6 SF, Georgia state.

Girls
Robyn Benton, Greater Atlanta Christian, 5-foo-9 guard, Auburn; Jenna Brown, Lovett, 5-foot-10 point guard, Stanford; Brooke Moore, Henry County, 5-foot-7 guard, Auburn; Jessika Carter, Harris County, 6-foot-3 post, Mississippi State; Morgan Jones, Our Lady of Mercy, 6-foot-2, guard, Florida State; Iyanla Kitchens, Arabia Mountain, 6-foot-2 post, University of Mississippi.

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