Emezie honored as UC Player of the Year
Not many teams found a way to slow down Marvin Ridge High's
John Emezie during the 2013-14 season.
A 6-foot-5, 200-pound senior wing, Emezie led Union County in scoring
at an astonishing 30.4 points per game. He put up 21 or more points in
all 25 of his team's games, eclipsed 30 14 times and reached the
40-point mark twice.
For his record-breaking season, Emezie has been voted UC's Player of
the Year by The Enquirer-Journal sports staff.
"I just go out and play my game and any accolades that come with it is
just a plus," said Emezie of receiving the honor. "My teammates and I
worked hard all season, so it's not just me. When I was playing well
they were the ones that found me."
Emezie's best performance of the season came in a 44-point effort in a
win over Central Cabarrus. He was 12-of-20 from the field, including
9-of-12 from 3-point range, and made 11 of his 12 free throw attempts.
"I was just shooting well that night," said Emezie. "I think I
air-balled my first shot of the game, but I kept telling my teammates
to keep finding me because I was feeling it. I didn't want to be
selfish but every shot felt good that night."
Emezie guided Marvin Ridge to a 15-10 record and a trip to the second
round of the 3A state playoffs. He also averaged 9.2 rebounds, 2.6
assists, 2.2 steals and 2.1 blocks per game.
The all-Southern Carolina Conference performer is committed to play
Division I basketball at West Point.
"I'm very nervous about it," said Emezie of joining Army's program.
"I've sat down with the coach and talked about things and I know other
guys that are coming in are working hard and putting in a lot of time,
so I'm looking forward to playing with some talented players. There's
more to it than just the military aspect."
Emezie is joined on first-team all-county by Weddington senior Brandon
Watts, Monroe senior Brandon Roddy, Piedmont junior Cameron Tripp and
Forest Hills junior Terrance Huntley.
Watts, a 6-foot-4 wing who has signed with UNC Pembroke, helped the
Warriors to their best season in school history.
Weddington finished 27-3, won the Southern Carolina Conference regular
season and tournament titles and advanced to the state quarterfinals
for the first time since 2004.
Watts averaged 14.1 points, 8.0 rebounds, 3.0 assists, 2.7 blocks and
2.5 steals per game on his way to earning player of the year honors in
Roddy, who was UC's player of the year as a junior last season,
averaged 22.7 points and 2.3 assists per game in 2013-14. He helped
the Redhawks finish 19-3, win the Rocky River Conference regular
season and tournament titles and advance to the second round of the 2A
Roddy was voted player of the year in the RRC for the second straight season.
Tripp solidified himself as the top center in Union County.
A 6-foot-6, 200-pounder, Tripp averaged 18.6 points, 9.3 rebounds and
1.6 blocks per game.
Piedmont finished 15-10 overall and second in the Southern Carolina Conference.
Huntley was voted to the first team after leading the Yellow Jackets
in scoring at 13.4 points per contest. A 5-9 guard, Huntley also led
UC at 2.6 steals per game.
Forest Hills finished 15-14 overall and made a run to the third round
of the 2A state playoffs, which included a second-round victory over
Emezie and Roddy are both repeat first-team all-county selections.
Watts was a second-team pick last season, while Tripp made the third team.
Weddington's Gary Ellington is UC's Coach of the Year after guiding
the Warriors to a school record for wins (27) and their first-ever
outright conference championship.
2013-14 All-Union County
boys basketball team
John Emezie^Marvin Ridge^Sr.
Terrance Huntley^Forest Hills^Jr.
Ryan Grigston^Central Academy^Sr.
Caleb Homesley^Porter Ridge^Jr.
Malcolm Cumberbatch^Sun Valley^Jr.
Jordan Blakeney^Forest Hills^So.
Jimmy Hudgens^Sun Valley^Jr.
Ben Killion^Union Academy^Jr.
Player of the year: John Emezie, Marvin Ridge
Coach of the year: Gary Ellington, Weddington