Oxford Webbs Isaiah Hicks is Mr. Basketball in North Carolina.
The Observer has handed out the award to the top senior basketball player in North Carolina since 1985. It began to offer the award to S.C. seniors in 1990. In previous years, the award was given by considering a senior players entire career, taking into account his individual and team accomplishments.
Beginning this season, the award is given to the senior who had the best season in each state.
Hicks, a 6-foot-8, 210-pound forward, led Webb to the N.C. 3A championship and was named 2012-13 Gatorade North Carolina Boys Basketball Player of the Year. He is a McDonalds All-American committed to North Carolina.
He led the Warriors to a 27-5 record, averaging 22.9 points, 12.9 rebounds, 5.6 blocks, 1.8 steals and 1.3 assists. Hicks shot 58 percent from the field, 41 percent from 3-point range and 66 percent from the free throw line.
In a 73-70 win over Statesville in the 3A championship game, Hicks finished with 34 points, a tournament-record 30 rebounds and seven blocks.
Coaching against him is a nightmare, said Wilton Baskett, coach of rival Northern Vance High. Hes 6-foot-9, but moves as gracefully as a point guard. A lot of times bigs are more stationary, but hes shooting (3-point shots), getting assists, making mid-range jumpers and dunking off the rim without bringing it down. Hes phenomenal. I was just telling people, Graduation is June 8, and June 9 will be one of the happiest days of my career, because Isaiah will be gone, and now well have a chance.
• Ms. Basketball in North Carolina is East Surrys Keri Fulp, a 6-3 center who averaged 16 points, 12 rebounds and three blocks this season. She shot better than 50 percent from the floor and 78 percent from the foul line. She finished her career with more than 1,000 points and 1,000 rebounds. She was a conference player of the year this season, a four-time all-conference pick and a two-time all-district pick. Fulp is signed to Wake Forest.
• Irmo Dutch Forks Alaina Coates is Ms. Basketball in South Carolina. The 6-5 center led the Silver Foxes to a 29-0 record this season and a second straight S.C. 4A state title. A McDonalds All-American, Coates averaged 21.4 points, 11.6 rebounds, 3.8 blocks, 2.6 steals and 1.4 assists. A 3.04 student, Coates participated in the 2011 U16 USA Basketball national team trials. Shes a South Carolina recruit.
• Mr. Basketball in South Carolina is Irmos Justin McKie, a 6-4 senior who led the Yellow Jackets to a 29-0 record and a S.C. 4A state title. McKie averaged 18 points, 4.5 rebounds, 3.5 assists 1.8 steals. He has signed with South Carolina.
Wertz : 704-612-9716; twitter : @langstonwertzjr
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