By J. Daniel Rollins
Register-Herald Sports Writer
If summer is bringing you the prep sports blues, perhaps a trip to the Capital City next weekend is just what the doctor ordered.
That’s because Charleston will host both the North-South All-Star Basketball Game on Friday night and the North-South All-Star Football Game on Saturday night. The former will be played at the South Charleston Community Center, while the latter will take place at Laidley Field at University of Charleston Stadium. Both events are scheduled for 7 p.m.
The South hoops squad will have a distinctive local flavor, highlighted by Keith Mullins (Greater Beckley), Josh Martin (Greenbrier West) and future West Virginia Mountaineer Brett Morris (Webster County).
Mullins, an outside shooting specialist, averaged 19.1 points per game this season for the 19-6 Crusaders. He lead GBC to arguably its most successful season, which ended with a first round loss in the state basketball tournament to Tucker County, 68-61. Mullins, who was named first-team Class A all-state by the WVSWA, surpassed 1,000 career points at Greater Beckley this season — doing so in only two seasons.
Martin, Mullins’ teammate in Scott Brown Memorial Classic, is the tallest player on the South roster, standing at 6-foot-7. The Randolph College signee averaged 17.2 points per game this season for the Cavaliers, earning himself second-team Class A honors.
Morris may be one of the Mountain State’s best kept secrets. The Webster County standout was named captain of the Class AA all-state team, averaging 25.9 points per game. The 6-4 slasher is Webster’s all-time leading scorer and was named the Class AA-A MVP of the Scott Brown game in April. Morris must have impressed, as just a month later he was meeting with Bob Huggins about a preferred walk-on spot with the Mountaineers, a position he gladly accepted.
Joining the local trio on the South squad will be MSAC Player of the Year Luke Eddy from George Washington, as well as state champion backcourt duo Austin Brewer and Mikey Newsome of Tug Valley, Ra’Shaud Kincaid (South Charleston), Matt Dolin (Scott), Zach Casto (Charleston Catholic), Angelo Sirianni (Nitro), Levi Jordan (Buffalo), Mackinzie Martin (Chapmanville) and Cody Morris (Herbert Hoover).
The North will be powered by West Virginia Player of the Year Donté Grantham, a 6-7 forward who helped lead Martinsburg to a Class AAA state championship win over Woodrow Wilson. Joining Grantham will be his former teammates at Martinsburg, Jalen Lewis and Jordan Robinson, and Fairmont Senior duo Travon Horton and Shaquille Washington.
Anyone counting the days until high school football season begins — it stands at 81 — clear your calendar for Saturday night.
The coalfields of southern West Virginia will be well represented on the South team, coached by Joe Dean of Midland Trail, with assistants Lewis McClung (Greenbrier West), Jim Martin (Woodrow Wilson) and Randy Halsey (Midland Trail).
A trio of Woodrow Wilson stars will highlight the South roster, including quarterback Andrew Johnson, running back Ramon Edwards and lineman Michael Bailey, who helped carry the Flying Eagles to the playoffs in 2012.
Joining the Flying Eagles on the South roster will be more local products: defensive end Ethan Barker and linebacker Jake Grimmett of Midland Trail, defensive end Slayton Beard of Valley, tight end Dustyn Murphy (Nicholas County), lineman Tré Moore (Greenbrier East), running back Tyler Parker and lineman Zach Johnson (Greenbrier West) and Brandon Williams (Oak Hill).
The remainder of the South roster will include Caleb Craddock and Zach Cooper of Hurricane, David Gaydosz and Gage Gould of Cabell Midland and Trevond Reese of South Charleston.
The North roster will feature a trio of Class AAA state champions in Jared Sartin, Gary Awkard and Cookie Clinton of Martinsburg and will be coached by Jodi Mote of St. Marys.
As part of the North-South weekend fastivities, the West Virginia Athletic Coaches Association’s Hall of Fame Class of 2013 will be inducted at 1:45 p.m. Saturday on the campus of West Virginia State University.
Headlining the class of 2013 will be former Minnesota Viking and Atlanta Falcon, Lonnie Warwick of Mount Hope. Warwick was a member of the feared “Purple People Eaters” Vikings defense of the 1960s and 1970s.
Joining Warwick in the class are Gary Barnette of South Harrison and Hoppy Shores of Stonewall Jackson.
— E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org and follow on Twitter at @JDanielRollins