Norcross and Wheeler clash early in the season
Norcross and Wheeler early-season clash shows why this is a historic rivalry in Georgia
Wheeler bounces back after losing to Meadowcreek in a non-conference showdown
In Atlanta Basketball, there is one powerhouse rivalry that is on everyone’s schedule. Both high schools are known to be factories for high caliber basketball players. Notable names include Norcross’ Al-Farouq Aminu, (Portland Trailblazers), Jeremy Lamb (Charlotte Hornets), and Wheeler High School’s JJ Hickson (Portland Trailblazers) and Jaylen Brown (Boston Celtics), all representing Atlanta Hoops and all participated in this traditional rivalry game. One of Atlanta’s most historic rivalries and this game lived up to the hype!
Big names are made in big games and Wheeler High School was full of surprises in this rivalry. The game plan for the Wildcats, in the beginning, was to be patient, spread the ball around, and crash the glass. (2019) 6’8 PF Malachi Rhodes’ was near perfect in the first half for Wheeler High School and set the early tempo with his inside scoring, and rebounding. Wheeler High School jumped on top of the Blue Devils, early with his inside play. The University of Denver commit (2019) PG Jaire Eastmond was great in transition and handled the pressure from the Blue Devils and was active on the defensive end. He answered the call with his perimeter game and (2019) Cal Commit Charles Smith IV used his slashing ability to keep the Blue Devils on their toes.
With his team’s back on the ropes, (2020) G Brandon Boston rose to the occasion and raised his game to another level. He stunned the Wildcats with his smooth midrange game and exciting jaw-dropping dunks. (2020) Caleb Murphy (8 points) and (2019) USC Commit Kyle Sturdivant came alive in the fourth quarter with their outside shooting. Sturdivant showcased his composure and strong driving ability on the fast break but the inside scoring and team rebounding of the Wildcats kept the Blue Devils from getting the momentum. (2020) Samuel Hines (10 points) put the staple on the game with two huge dunks late in the fourth quarter and the Wildcats bounced back from their opening season loss against Meadowcreek with a 62-55 win over Norcross. Rhodes finished with fourteen points and Eastmond led Wheeler with seventeen points. Boston and Sturdivant led Norcross with seventeen points.