By John Wilbert/NEMS Daily Journal
CLINTON – When Reggie Patterson couldn’t successfully dish the basketball to his wide-open cousin Keldrick Lesley during the first three minutes of the second half, you started to get the sense that the North All-Stars were unraveling and the South was about to dominate the rest of the way.
Patterson, who plays for Baldwyn, had just drained a 3-pointer when the North had a chance to cut the South lead to five on a fastbreak. Patterson (eight points, 2 of 4 from 3-point range) may have wanted to initially throw an alleyoop to Booneville’s Lesley, but the two weren’t on the same page and the ball ended up going out of bounds.
The South then went up 12 and led by double digits for most of the duration as it claimed a 103-92 victory in the 57th Mississippi Association of Coaches All-Star boys basketball game at the A.E. Wood Coliseum on Saturday afternoon.
The win gives the South a commanding 36-21 series lead in the annual all-star game for rising high school seniors.
Not everything was bad for the North stars, though. Starkville’s Jacolby Mobley, who won Friday’s 3-point contest, tallied a team-high 19 points on four 3s, while Yellowjackets teammate Gavin Ware scored nine points, grabbed eight rebounds, blocked two shots, registered two assists and recorded a theft as he won defensive MVP honors.
However, the highlight of the game belonged to Calhoun City’s Dartavion Primer, a skinny 6-foot-2 guard. Primer, who started to have enough of the South’s trash talk, elevated in the lane and slammed home the ball in the face of 6-foot-7 South player LaDarron Johnson with a little more than 90 seconds to play before halftime.
“I’ve never just really taken off like that,” Primer said of posterizing Johnson as he contested the shot. “That was my first time to take off like that.
“The South players just got me hyped up, they were just talking (trash) to me.”
In the end, the South got the last laugh, however, as Fred Thomas scored a game-high 23 and Kemper County’s Devonta Pollard added 16.