02.13.19 | News
City of Palms champions keep on winning
McEachern (Powder Springs, Georgia) announced its presence as one of this season’s truly elite teams when it blazed through the field to win the Culligan City of Palms Classic, and the team is still setting the high school basketball landscape afire.
The unbeaten squad led by electric point guard Sharife Cooper and Auburn commit Isaac Okoro has picked up a number of marquee victories this season, including a sweep of Findlay Prep (Henderson, Nevada) and fellow City of Palms finalist Imhotep Charter (Philadelphia) in the Cancer Research Classic.
Then came wins over Springfield (Missouri) Catholic, Shadow Mountain (Phoenix) and Sunrise Christian Academy (Bel Aire, Kansas) in the Bass Pro Tournament of Champions, giving McEachern another championship to boast. Less than a week later, McEachern won its matchup with Rancho Christian (Temecula, California) in the Hoophall Classic.
Now, the team is hunting its state championship, having already won the Georgia Class 7A Region 3 Tournament. It would be easy to credit the success almost entirely to the presence of Cooper and Okoro, each one of ESPN’s top 40 recruits in their respective classes. But it’s the lettering that appears instead of their names on the back of their jerseys that tells a truer story.
“We > Me” is the mantra emblazoned on McEachern’s jerseys and in the minds of the team, which is well-positioned for an invitation to the Geico Nationals in April. And if they get there, another familiar foe may be waiting on them. Mountain Brook (Birmingham, Alabama), the team McEachern beat in the City of Palms semifinals, has made a similar run through its schedule, beating Memphis East in the Hot Bed Classic and missing an unbeaten trip to the Hoops City Classic by a single point. Max Preps has
the team at No. 6 in its latest Xcellent 25 national rankings.
Now, Mountain Brook is on to its regional tournament, and like McEachern, the team is a testament that a strong performance at the City of Palms is a harbinger of national prominence.