Ammons ready for Miss.-Ala. matchup

Published 12:01 pm Friday, March 18, 2011

There will be plenty of familiar faces for Vicksburg forward Mychal Ammons when he gets to Pelham, Ala., to play in tonight’s 21st Alabama-Mississippi high school all-star game.

The Vicksburg senior was one of 12 Mississippi players selected for the game that will pit them against senior all-stars from Alabama. The series is tied at 10-all after Mississippi stomped Alabama 112-88 last year in Pelham.

Ammons said he’s looking forward to playing with several of his friends like Daniel Grieves of St. Stanislaus and Deville Smith of Callaway.

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“It should be a pretty fun game,” Ammons said. “I hope they have a dunk contest. I want to win that.”

Ammons led Vicksburg to the Class 6A boys championship game on March 5. The Gators lost to Meridian 62-47 despite 24 points from Ammons. Mississippi State signee Rodney Hood, who led Meridian to the title with 24 points, declined a berth on the Mississippi roster to play in a national all-star game in Texas with Brandon’s Tyler Adams. High school players are allowed to play in just two all-star games in a calender year.

“You just have to wish those guys the best,” Ammons said. “Johnny O’Briant is not playing either and he’s been a good friend of mine since we’ve been tripping out in AAU ball.”

Grieves, who led St. Stanislaus to the Class 4A boys title, has known Ammons since they were in eighth grade and teammates on the United States’ 15-and-under national team in the FIBA World Championships in Switzerland.

“He’s already texted me about rooming up together,” Ammons said.

Ammons, a 6-foot-6 forward, led Vicksburg to a 27-4 record. He averaged 22.5 points and 9.5 rebounds per game for the Gators. He signed with South Alabama in November.

Since the season ended, Ammons has spent most of his time studying to retake the ACT.

“I’m just looking for a little cushion,” Ammons said. “Right now, I’m good to go with South Alabama, but I want to take the test two more times.”

Ammons also wanted to clear up questions surrounding his lack of recruitment by Mississippi’s big three colleges last year, Mississippi State in particular. He said he lost interest in the Bulldogs, not the other way around.

“State didn’t back off of me, I backed off on State,” Ammons said.

Also picked to play for the Mississippi team was Pasacagoula senior Bryan Williams. Williams had 25 points against Vicksburg in the Class 6A semifinals. Ridgeland’s Donovan Ross and Provine’s Jarvis Summers, an Ole Miss signee, will play for the Mississippi team as well.

Former Vicksburg High girls coach Mike Coleman will coach the Mississippi girls team. Coleman has been the girls’ coach in Quitman for the last six years.