Throughout the high school boys basketball season, we recognize the standouts from the previous week’s action with the Lowco Boys Hoops Spotlight presented by Hilton Head Insurance and Brokerage.
We select an offensive and defensive player of the week, as well as a Team of the Week, and highlight the biggest game of the upcoming week.
Here’s this week’s installment of the Lowco Boys Hoops Spotlight presented by HHI&B.
OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Will McCracken, HHIHS
It was only a matter of time before The Cracken emerged as our Player of the Week, because he has been incredibly consistent for the Seahawks (with the exception of a rough game at Richmond Hill in early December). The UNC Wilmington commit is averaging a team-best 18.1 points and nine rebounds, and he went bonkers against Beaufort with 25 points and 15 boards in a huge region win. McCracken’s 14 points and eight boards in a 48-43 win at May River last Tuesday seemed to come at all the right times, helping HHIHS escape with a hard-fought win.
Honorable Mention: Jayden Chance, HHP; Jakii Morrow, MRHS; Mark Knight, JPII; Jaeon Allen, BCHS; Oliver Holmes, BHS; Brian Hamilton, CCHS
DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK
JJ Hayes, HHP
Sure, we could have thrown Hayes in the mix for his third Offensive Player of the Week award — he did put up 20 points in each of the Dolphins’ games this week, both wins — but he also got it done at the other end of the floor. The junior averaged a double-double (20 points, 11.5 rebounds) and contributed two steals and 1.5 blocks per contest as HHP held its two opponents to 47 points per game — and that included an overtime win at Bethesda Academy.
Also nominated: Sam Summa, HHIHS; Steffin Gadson, MRHS; Jordon Rivers, BCHS; Devonta Barnard, WB; Daniel Phares, BHS
TEAM OF THE WEEK
Whale Branch Warriors (2-0 last week, 5-2 overall)
Our friend Jaylen Reeves gave us some beef on social media for calling this a rebuilding year in Seabrook, and maybe he was right. It ain’t the Taj Mahal, but there’s enough structure left after losing four starters to graduation that the Warriors just keep winning. It’s been ugly, and if Jim Raymond had any hair left on top before, it would certainly be gone by now, but Whale Branch is undefeated in region play and keeps finding ways to win close games. They have three region wins in the bank, and no one else has more than one, which with the uncertainty of the remaining schedule could end up being the deciding factor in who makes the postseason.
Honorable Mention: Hilton Head High, Hilton Head Prep
GAME OF THE WEEK
James Island at Hilton Head High, Tuesday
This is the one we’ve been waiting for in Region 7-4A. The third-ranked Trojans have played only three games, but they didn’t show a ton of rust in a 53-38 win over Bluffton on Friday in their first action since Dec. 3. They’ll have to be in top form tonight against a solid Seahawks squad that has proven its ability to close out close games. Hilton Head High’s early home-and-home with Richmond Hill should have the Seahawks well-prepared for their biggest challenge yet on the region slate.
(Offensive, Defensive, Team)
Week 1: JJ Hayes, HHP; Zyrin Odom, BHS; Battery Creek
Week 2: JJ Hayes, HHP; David Smith, BCHS; John Paul II
Week 3: Ben VanHise, BA; Jaeon Allen, BCHS; Beaufort High
Week 4: Will McCracken, HHIHS; JJ Hayes, HHP; Whale Branch