The second annual RDU High School All-Star Game is almost here.
The basketball showcase featuring some elite talent from the Raleigh-Durham area will be held at Millbrook on Saturday, April 9. The girls’ game is scheduled to tip at 1 p.m., and the boys will follow at 3 p.m.
A scouting team formed four 10-man rosters – a Raleigh boys’ and girls’ team and the same for Durham – throughout the high school basketball season. Some standouts invited include Arizona commit Rawle Alkins (Word of God), Justice Kithcart (Virginia Episcopal School, previously Hillside and Riverside) and McDonald’s All-American nominee Mikaya Wilson (Knightdale).
In addition to bringing together the area’s top talent, the game’s CEO Eric Gaskins said it’s a chance for young student-athletes to give back to the community and get a second chance at a basketball scholarship.
Last year, he said, three players were offered scholarships at the event.
“We’re very proud of that,” Gaskins said, “and hopefully, we’ll continue with inviting scouts and have a child that did not get an opportunity during the high school season to get another look before they attend college.”
Gaskins started the all-star game because he said not enough players from the Triangle were getting invited to larger games, such as the East-West All-Star Game or North Carolina vs. South Carolina. He wanted to bring the “best out of Durham versus the best out of Raleigh” to the community.
The local high school stars are also playing to raise money for nonprofit organizations in the Triangle that include Triangle Thunder AAU Basketball, the YMCA’s Spirit Basketball and the Raleigh and Durham Rescue Missions.
Admission is $10. If you bring a canned food item, it’s $8, and the food will be donated to the area’s missions.
“I started getting involved in the community when I played football at Wake Forest,” said Gaskins, a Southern Durham graduate. “I never had that insight of looking toward that field until I was in college. An early start will (show) the kids that it’s not just all about basketball. Being a good person in your community will go a long way.”
Jessika Morgan: 919-829-4538, @JessikaMorgan
Justice Kitchart, Virginia Episcopal School
Charles Norman, Prominence Academy
Larry McLeod, Bull City Prep
Chance Greene, Voyager Academy
Tristen Reese, Mt. Zion
Devonte Barker, Faith Assembly Academy
Anthony Peak, Riverside
Aaron Johnson-Chavis, Bull City Prep
T.J Bell, Northern
Jahlil Rawley, Prominence Academy
Dondre Griffin, Knightdale
Jaylen Fornes, Word of God
Trejon Jacob, Millbrook
Faison Brock, Millbrook
Taj Thompson, Sanderson
John Burwell, Millbrook
Tharon Suggs, Broughton
Ben Zemonek, Leesville
Matt Kalaf, Neuse Christian Academy
Rawle Alkins, Word of God
Zaria Rogers, Riverside
Rhianna Council, Northern Durham
Ja’Mia Johnson, Hillside
Ariel Wilson, Riverside
Christina Bright, Jordan
Bobbi Whitaker, North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics
Addis Lemon, Southern Durham
Mikaya Wilson, Knightdale
Kelly Funderburke, Leesville
Jaleesa Dillard, Millbrook
L’Donnisty Granison, Millbrook
Nandi Traywick, Ravenscroft
Alexis Hunter, Ravenscroft
Brittney Smith, Broughton
Katie Wadesworth, Broughton
Mariah Partin, Southeast Raleigh
Brianna Lee, Enloe
Kia Abrams, Southeast Raleigh