Local Team Bests Top Recruits
They played an interesting game this past Sunday over at Friendship Collegiate, not that many people saw it. With one day's notice, Friendship hosted and defeated Pendleton School, 62-58. Pendleton School is the branch of the IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla., where Mike Beasley spent his freshman year and this season boasts one player bound for Florida and another for Louisville.
"A buddy of mine is pretty close to the director and head coach at IMG and they were in Richmond for a game on Friday evening and they didn't fly out until Monday," Friendship Coach Clinton Crouch said. "He called me Saturday and asked if I wanted to play them. They were still in town and wanted to get another game in this area before they left. Of course I wanted to play them."
Short notice might be a problem at other places that face scheduling regulations or other such red tape. As an independent, though, Friendship can schedule as it pleases. The team spent a week in Hawaii before Christmas to play in a tournament and has upcoming home-and-home series with Montrose Christian and National Christian, as well as a smattering of contests against lesser competition on a 42-game schedule.
"The more exposure the better for my kids," Crouch said. "I don't mind playing the heavyweights."
On Sunday, that meant lining up against Pendleton's 6-10 Kenny Kadji (signed with Florida) and 6-9 Jared Swopshire (signed with Louisville), as well as top junior Dwight Powell, who is 6-9. But Friendship's 6-9 junior, Alvin Brown, had 15 points and 15 rebounds as the home team came away with the victory.
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