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Basketball schedule | Sweet 16 | Eligible teams

The Observer’s Top 25 N.C. prep basketball senior recruits and a list of underclassmen to watch.

This week, Hough High’s Luke Maye, one of the best high school basketball players in North Carolina, announced he would attend UNC and play for coach Roy Williams’ Tar Heels. Maye, a 6-foot-8, 235-pound senior power forward, said it was a dream come true. ... Thirty one years ago, his father Mark Maye said the same thing when he announced he would play football for the Tar Heels.

Lake Norman returns three starters, including 6-foot-6 Davidson recruit Kishawn Pritchett and 6-10 Hunter Seacat, who has signed with William & Mary. Senior shooter David Scott is also back, and the Wildcats have depth, including 6-10, 240-pound junior Riley Jones.

Teams to watch include West Charlotte, North Mecklenburg, Northside Christian, Ardrey Kell and Hough, which is led by Luke Maye, one of the top players in the country.

Michaela Daniels was just a sophomore the last time Providence High’s girls basketball team made the state playoffs.

The 2014-15 girls’ basketball season begins exactly the way the last one ended – with Myers Park atop the Observer’s Sweet 16 poll.

Myers Park: The defending 4A state champion Mustangs have two big time players in All-American forward D.D. Rogers and all-state point guard Aliyah Mazyck, giving them a great chance of a repeat performance (30-1 last year) in 2015.

Last year, then-junior Cameron Tripp led a senior-heavy Piedmont team to its third straight state playoff appearance, and its first as a 3A-level school.

Weddington Girls: Warriors return all five starters, including all-state guard Stephanie Watts (UNC commit) from a 25-5 team that made it to the 3A West Regional semifinals, giving them a chance to go even deeper this year.

Basketball is no longer child’s play for Lavar Batts Jr., a Concord Robinson sophomore who was named to MaxPreps freshman All-American team last year.

Hickory Ridge boys: Guard trio of senior Jaylen Stowe, junior Avery Metcalf and sophomore Andrew Metcalf combined for 39 points a game last season.

Lake Norman basketball coach Brandon Jolly believes that his star senior, Davidson signee KiShawn Pritchett, has gotten much better since his junior season ended.

Lake Norman Boys: Reigning NCSHAA Class 4A state runner-up is loaded with experience and talent in seniors KiShawn Pritchett (Davidson commit), Hunter Seacat (William & Mary commit), David Scott among others and should be a state championship contender again.

Despite playing for its third coach in four years, the Ardrey Kell girls’ basketball team has had some of its best seasons in program history, including making it to the 4A West Regional final last season.

Northwestern boys: The Trojans finished second only to Lancaster (now in AAA) in the region last year, going 21-6. With four starters back including standouts Armani Hill and Malcolm Anthony, Coach Larry Davis and Co. are one of the favorites to challenge for a region title.

Now that C.J. Bryce has made up his mind that he’ll play for UNC Wilmington next season, he’s ready to focus on Task No. 1 – helping the Vikings win another conference title and make another trip to the state playoffs.

Teams and players to watch and conference predictions.

No N.C. 4A girls’ basketball team – the predominant class historically for Mecklenburg high schools – has ever won back-to-back state titles.

Teams and players to watch and conference predictions in Gaston County high school basketball.

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