High School HS Basketball HS Boy's Basketball

The Stage Has Been Set For The Dick’s National Tournament

at Madison Square Garden in New York, New York on Saturday, Apr 4, 2015. DICKS Sporting Goods High School National Tournament Boys Basketball Final between #1 Oak Hill and #2 Montverde Academy. by Steven Ryan
Photo Courtesy: http://www.maxpreps.com

What can be called the March Madness of high school basketball, the Dick’s National Tournament is an event where the top boys and girls teams in the country come together with the opportunity to compete for a National Championship.

Last year, Montverde Academy (FL.) won their third straight Dick’s National Championship, beating Oak Hill Academy (Va.) 70-61. LSU forward Ben Simmons finished with 20 and 11 rebounds to lead Montverde to a championship win. Simmons also was named to the All-Tournament team.

Other notable players that played in this tournament includes Jaylen Brown, Los Angeles Lakers D’Angelo Russell, Washington Wizards Kelly Oubre, Cleveland Cavaliers Tristan Thompson and Toronto Raptors Terrence Ross.

This years tournament will not feature undefeated Chino Hills and their talented Ball Brothers due to California state rules. H.D. Woodson went from being unranked to the No. 8 in the country after winning their second consecutive DCIAA title and posting a 33-0 record. But they didn’t get an invite to the tournament.

The event will have teams like Montverde, Oak Hill , Findlay Prep (Nev.), St. Benedict’s Prep (Newark), La Lumiere (Ind.), Miller Grove (Ga.), Providence Day (Charlotte), and Wasatch Academy. Schools like Riverdale Baptist (Md.), Seton Catholic (Ariz.), Ribault (Fla.) and St. Francis (Ga.) will make up the girls bracket.

Oak Hill Academy will be making their seventh tournament appearance. They have a 8-6 record in the tournament and made to the championship game four times. During the regular season, the Warriors went 40-1 despite not having Duke commit Harry Giles due to injury. The No. 3 team in the country beat schools like DeMatha (Md.), Chaminade Prep (MO), Mater Dei (CA), Sierra Canyon (CA), and Huntington Prep (WV.). Head coach Steve Smith and his team are the second seed in the tournament and they will take on Wasatch Academy, who is the seventh seed.

Montverde’s group of talented players gives them a great chance to win their fourth consecutive¬†Dick’s National Championship. Guys like Micah Potter, Howard Washington, EJ Montgomery and Bruno Fernando helped Montverde go 25-1 during the regular season. They won the Beach Ball Classic by beating St. John’s College High School in the final. The Eagles also took down DeMatha, Huntington Prep, Roselle Catholic and Roman Catholic. Montverde is the first seed in the tournament and they will face eighth seed Providence Day.

Ben Simmons
Photo Courtesy: http://www.nola.com

Findlay Prep (Nev.) will enter the tournament with a 28-1 record and rank No. 6 in the nation by USA Today. The Pilot’s have made seven appearances in the tournament and won the championship three times. Findlay Prep will be the third seed and will take on sixth seed Miller Grove and their McDonald’s All-American Alterique Gilbert.

St. Benedict’s 31-1 season earned them an invite to the tournament. The last time they went to this event was back in 2013 when it was called the National High School Invitational. St. Benedict’s opponent in the first round of the tournament will be La Lumiere. A team that ended their season on a 11 game win streak.

The quarterfinals of the Dick’s National Tournament will start on March 31 at Christ the King High School in Middle Village, NY. The semifinals will take place the following day at the same location. The winners of the semifinals will go to Madison Square Garden for the championship game. All games can be watched on ESPN, ESPN2, and ESPNU.

Follow Inside The Locker Room on Twitter @lockerroom2015

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