High School

WCAC Tournament Preview, Schedule: DeMatha is the top seed but not necessarily the favorite

WCAC Tournament Preview, Schedule: DeMatha is the top seed but not necessarily the favorite

The WCAC is home to some of the most prestigious basketball programs in the country. When the conference tournament tips off Thursday night, the league's highly-recruited, nationally-ranked and uber-talented young men will put their collective games on display for the nation to see. Needless to say, the WCAC tournament is going to be a movie.

Here’s the breakdown:

TEAMS TO WATCH:

#1 seed DeMatha (27-3): At one point, the Stags were winners of 22 consecutive games en route to finishing league play 19-1.

Led by Miami commit Earl Timberlake and 7-foot-2 Michigan commit Hunter Dickinson, DeMatha is a force to be reckoned with. In addition to its stallions, coach Mike Jones’ team boasts stellar guard play and showcases the skill of dynamic wing Jordan Hawkins.

DeMatha may have already booked their ticket to Monday’s final.

#3 seed Gonzaga (21-9): Coach Steve Turner’s Gonzaga squad has a propensity for showing up big in big moments. The defending champs are battle tested and won’t be intimidated by what could be a daunting path to this year’s championship game.

Vandy commit Myles Stute and Michigan commit Terrance Williams have displayed an ability to dominate from both the interior and the wing; their versatility will cause match-up nightmares for the Eagles’ opponents.

#7 seed Archbishop Carroll (17-13): Archbishop Carroll can defend and if a team can prevent the other from scoring easy baskets, they can keep themselves in ball games. Carroll allowed the third-fewest points in conference play -- only St. John’s and DeMatha gave up fewer. Expect Archbishop to put the squeeze on The Heights Thursday night.

Additionally, the Lions notched key victories over Good Counsel and St. John’s during the regular season. Overall, they are winners in seven of their last 10 -- they’re playing their best ball at the right time.

SLEEPER:

#5 Seed Good Counsel (19-11): The Falcons clawed their way to a cinderella season thus far and they may not be finished dancing. A perennial bottom-dweller, Good Counsel resurrected its program this year to the tune of a 5-seed and first-round bye.

On Saturday, Good Counsel plays 4-seed St. John’s. Head-to-head, the Falcons lost both of their games to the Cadets, but if they can control pace and keep their quarterfinal contest a low-scoring affair, the Falcons will upset St. John’s and waltz into the semis.

FAVORITE:

Paul VI (22-7): Top-to-bottom, PVI may be the most talented team in the WCAC. The Panthers have seven losses, but they played one of the toughest schedules in the nation.

Under the leadership of coach Glenn Farello, PVI plays the game the right way. Farello's squad is hard-nosed and unafraid to sacrifice personal numbers for the benefit of the team.

Tournaments such as this one are often dominated by guard play and the Panthers are loaded with playmakers in the back court. Look for big performances from Doug McDaniel and Will Paige, while Duke commit Jeremy Roach paints his final masterpiece.

DeMatha suffered only one defeat in conference play -- it came on February 16th, at the hands of PVI.

Full Schedule: 

Saturday, February 22, 2020
Boys Quarterfinal Games at Gallaudet University   ADMISSION is $10.00

1:00pm (5) Good Counsel at (4) St. John's
2:45pm Bishop O'Connell at (1) DeMatha
4:30pm Archbishop Carroll at (2) Paul VI
6:15pm Bishop McNamara at (3) Gonzaga

Sunday, February 23, 2020
Girls Semi-Finals at American University   ADMISSION is $10.00
1:00pm
2:45pm

Boys Semi-Finals at American University  ADMISSION is $10.00
4:30pm
6:15pm 

Monday, February 24, 2020
Girls and Boys Finals at American University  ADMISSION is $15.00

6:00pm   Girls Finals
8:00pm   Boys Finals

Triple-jumper Jordyn Johnson on her senior season being cut short

Triple-jumper Jordyn Johnson on her senior season being cut short

Due to the outbreak of coronavirus, a number of high school seniors saw their final sports seasons cut short. At NBC Sports Washington, we invited them to share their stories. This one comes to us from Archbishop Carroll senior track and field student-athlete Jordyn Johnson.

Walking into 2020, I had different notions about my senior year. Starting and finishing my indoor season with great numbers I expected my outdoor season to be a phenomenal way to end my high school career. With the wins I was accumulating, I made first-team All-Met and finished my season ranked in the top 10 nationally in the triple jump but missing out on the New Balance Indoor Nationals and a chance to compete and challenge the best the country has to offer.

Knowing that my outdoor season has been stripped away, it's traumatic because I was looking forward to competing at Mt. SAC relays in California, Penn relays, our WCAC conference championship and our outdoor state championship. The suspension has affected me not only from improving my numbers but it has caused major setbacks in training.

It’s overwhelming when you know all the things you worked hard for is being stripped away within a heartbeat. Not only is it taking away my last track meets in high school but it has caused a delay in my prom and graduation. Something I have been waiting for my entire life.

To deal with this devastating news I have consumed myself with my school work, FaceTime, movies, TikToks with family, going on runs in my neighborhood, and focusing on getting ready for my freshman season of college track at Delaware State.

READ MORE FROM HIGH SCHOOL SENIORS HERE.

 

Q&A with Gonzaga 5-star QB Caleb Williams about why he picked the schools in his final 5

Q&A with Gonzaga 5-star QB Caleb Williams about why he picked the schools in his final 5

Caleb Williams, the 5-star quarterback out of Gonzaga College High School, dropped his final five of college options last Monday: Maryland, Penn State, Clemson, LSU and Oklahoma.

According to Caleb’s father, Carl Williams, they plan to make a final decision about which program he'll attend before the new school year starts. They want Caleb to be able to enjoy his senior season and focus on recruiting other student athletes to come with him wherever he chooses to go.

I had a conversation with Caleb to find out what stood out to him about each of these programs and why they made the cut.

When I think of Penn State, I think, “We Are.” Happy Valley has an amazing football community steeped in tradition. Why are you potentially interested in playing for Coach [James] Franklin?

Other than the 110K fans they have each week -- I’ve known Coach Franklin since freshman year, and I’ve known a few of the other coaches on staff since before then, so it’s all about relationship building.

Beyond that, their fans are great. I went to the Blue/White game, and they were just as loud as if it were a real game and they were playing Michigan or Ohio State.

In considering the [Clemson] Tigers, not only do they offer the “ALL IN” championship culture, but also the potential of playing for a coach like Dabo Swinney, who dances and goes out of his way to connect with student athletes. What attracts you to Clemson?

Like you said, Coach Dabo… he’s a mature kid. He’s awesome [laughs]. He’s awesome and he’s really genuine. He’s a Christian man, and you can’t really beat that.

He doesn’t consider what he’s doing “work.” He loves going in and doing what he’s supposed to do in life. 

LSU is the defending National Champion -- so they have that in their favor -- and Heisman trophy winner Joe Burrow starred at quarterback with the Tigers. Last season’s offensive coordinator Joe Brady has left for the NFL, though. Why are you still considering LSU?

Coach O [Ed Orgeron]. He kind of makes you want to run through a brick wall at times. On game day, when you have that juice running through you, there’s not much anybody else can do to you. When you have love for the game [individually] and are willing to run through a brick wall, you should be unstoppable. 

And their fans… if you haven’t been to an LSU game, you need to go. They say some things I can’t say on social media, but it’s an awesome experience. You’ll laugh and have a great time.

What coach [Lincoln] Riley has been able to do with quarterbacks at Oklahoma is unheard of. Every year they have a Heisman candidate at QB putting up huge numbers. How do you see yourself fitting into that Boomer Sooner system?

If you look at the last four years or so, I believe I can do just about anything Kyler [Murray], Baker [Mayfield] or [Jalen] Hurts have done either physically or mentally. And if you look at the history of Oklahoma football -- they’ve produced hall of famers both at the NFL and college level. Also, with Coach Riley being who he is; an awesome family man and awesome coach, you can’t really beat that.

The University of Maryland makes your top five, and the DMV community is going nuts over that. Coach [Mike] Locksley is building something special. [Wide receiver] Rakim Jarret is attempting to lead the next “Stay Home Movement.” If you choose the Terps, it’ll blow the roof off this thing.

I’ve known coach Locksley and coach Scottie Montgomery for years now. I’ve known coach Scottie since he was at Duke with coach [David] Cutcliffe, Peyton Manning’s coach, and I’ve known coach Locksley since he was at Alabama when they were recruiting me.

Over time, they’ve continued to recruit me and now that coach Locksley is back home, Maryland is on the list.

Stay connected to the Capitals and Wizards with the MyTeams app. Click here to download for comprehensive coverage of your teams.