After receiving an early Christmas present by winning the HAECO championship, the Greensboro Day School boys are going after another trophy across the border in South Carolina.
The Bengals are scheduled to face John Marshall High School of Richmond, Va., on Wednesday in the Chick-fil-A Classic Holiday Basketball Tournament in Columbia. The Bengals and the Justices are set for 11:10 a.m. in the American Bracket.
“Coming down here is going to be a great experience because, you get exposed to some national-level players, and it’s great to be able to do something like this,” Greensboro Day head coach Freddy Johnson said.
Marshall is led by 6-foot-7 forward Dennis Parker Jr., who averages 23.5 points per game and has committed to N.C. State. Marshall has four players in double figures.
“It’s a big test for us, because we lost four starters who are all playing D1 this year,” Johnson said. “We’re basically a very young, inexperienced team that’s getting better every week.”
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Greensboro Day (14-2) won the HAECO Invitational with a 64-50 victory over Smith. Jordan Moody and Joe Bachman and were named to the all-tournament team. Jayden Young was named HAECO MVP. Even with the accolades, Johnson said the Bengals need to be better against Marshall.
“We will turn the ball over less and rebound better,” he said. “We had too many turnovers at HAECO in our first two games. Our third game, we did a good job against Smith High School.”
The other half of the bracket includes Christopher Columbus High School of Miami and 6-9 Cameron Boozer and 6-3 Cayden Boozer, sons of former Duke and NBA star Carlos Boozer.
Unbeaten John Marshall (7-0) is ranked 16th in the MaxPreps Top 25. Another ranked team, No. 7 Wheeler of Marietta, Ga., is in the field on the bottom side of the American bracket.
Whatever the outcome, Johnson sees the tournament as a chance to prepare for the stretch run.
“It will show all of our weaknesses,” he said. “It’ll bring out what we need to work on to get us better for our conference season, and our run for the state championship.”