Late trey sinks North All-Stars|Vicksburg’s Howard scores 11 in basketball showcase

Published 12:00 am Sunday, July 12, 2009

CLINTON — A 32-foot 3-pointer by Forest Hill’s Andre Stringer capped a last-minute comeback for the South All-Stars in their 107-104 win Saturday afternoon at the Mississippi Association of Coaches All-Star game at A.E. Wood Coliseum.

Stringer led all scorers with 30 points and his long-range bomb came with 35 seconds remaining to put the South ahead 105-104. The South erased a 10-point deficit in the final two minutes.

“The shot felt good to me. I felt I could make it,” Stringer said. The shot came just after Murrah’s Dondrecus Nelson had made a free throw to give the North a 104-102 lead.

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After Stringer’s shot, the South stole a long inbound pass which led to an open basket by Biloxi’s Jeremiah Dunning to give the South its three-point margin. The North missed a 3-point shot with a second left.

“We got beat by two big threes, including the big one at the end by Stringer,” North coach Greg Carter of Starkville said.

The first of the big treys Carter mentioned came with a minute left when Dunning dropped in a shot from the after getting the pass from Hinds AHS point guard Keeslee Stewart.

“Our coaches wanted me to look to penetrate and then dish out to the guy who would knock down the shot. That was Dunning,” Stewart said of his assist that brought the South to within 103-102.

Stewart, who led the War Dawgs to the Class 2A title and a runner-up finish in the Overall State Tournament last March, finished with four points and two assists, none bigger than the one to Dunning.

“This was a great experience playing with these top-notch guys,” Stewart said. “Andre Stringer is a terrific player and it was great to play with him. I had no doubt he’d make that shot, even from that distance.”

Vicksburg High’s Kelsey Howard saw plenty of action, especially in the second half and helped the North grab a 96-86 lead with two minutes to go.

“This was a good experience. I got to play with some of the best players in Mississippi,” Howard said.

Howard played 22 minutes, mostly in the off-guard slot. He did, however, at times, have to guard Stringer in the second half.

“We wanted to put someone with a little more size on him, to get him a different look,” Carter said.

“I guess that’s what they wanted,” Howard said. “Andre’s quick. And he can shoot it, from just about anywhere.”

Howard’s highlights came midway through the second half. He knocked down an open 12-foot shot to break a 71-71 tie. He later hit a putback for 81-75 lead.

Howard had 11 points. He was 5-of-10 from the field and 1-of-2 from the free throw line. He also five rebounds and two assists.

The North was led by Desmond Haymon of Williams-Sullivan with 24 points. Yazoo City’s DeMarco Cox had 15 points and 10 rebounds and was named the North’s Defensive MVP. Starkville’s Rashad Perkins chipped in 13 points and Ife Eke had 14. Dunning finished with 23 points  for the South and Trency Jackson of Wingfield added 22 for the South.


Contact Jeff Byrd at