As DeMatha Catholic High School students walk down the halls, they won’t see the 6-foot-6-inch, 225-pound, power forward Joe Hampton.
Hampton announced that he will transfer to Oak Hill Academy on Jul. 3. This marked the first DeMatha basketball player to transfer to Oak Hill since Quinn Cook.
It’s easy to say that the team will miss Hampton this upcoming season. Last season, the junior averaged 11.9 points per game, helped the Stags to a 29-6 season, and earn a trip to the Washington Catholic Athletic Conference Championship. If Hampton where to stay at DeMatha, he would likely be one of the top players on the team. His ability to play inside, and take the outside shot will definitely be missed.
Hampton’s absence will have an effect on the overall experience of the team. Until he made his announcement, Hampton was going to be the only big man, who was in the starting lineup last season. This means seniors Thomas Bruce and Harrison Grant will have to step up and fill in Hampton’s shoes.
Hampton is not the only player that transferred from DeMatha. Junior Alani Moore decided leave the basketball powerhouse, and go to Montrose Christian, the high school Kevin Durant attended.
With the loss of Moore, the depth the team had at the point guard position will take a hit. When Moore came off the bench last season, he was able to run the floor, while senior Terrell Allen was getting some rest.
The loss of Joe Hampton and Alani Moore will play an effect, but that doesn’t mean the team will plummet; DeMatha still has a lot of players returning this year. Players such as sophomore D.J. Harvey, junior Reginald Gardiner, senior Thomas Bruce, and senior Harrison Grant have the ability to make the team competitive. Despite Joe Hampton’s departure, the team still has potential to pose as a tough competitor this season.