Wednesday, Apr 23, 2014
Local Sports

A coach on the floor


Being a successful guard on a basketball team requires a number of intangibles that not every player has.

Sebring’s Decaris Jones displayed talent and ability as the senior handled the ball against pressure, got the Blue Streaks into their offense and made his teammates better.

Jones, who played three years varsity, averaged 13.2 points, 3.1 steals and 2.7 assists a game against very tough Class 6A competition.

“Decaris was a team leader,” said Sebring boys basketball coach Princeton Harris. “He was tough to defend because he could shoot the ball from the outside and he had the quickness and strength to drive to the basket.”

For his ability and accomplishments, Jones has been selected as the 2013 Highlands Today All-Highlands Boys Basketball Player of the Year.

“Decaris had a lot of experience and was like having a coach on the floor,” Harris said. “He is a well-rounded young man and a great asset to our program.”

The Team: Anfernee Munnings, freshman, Lake Placid: Munnings was the point guard and averaged 11.9 points and 3.0 rebounds a game for the Green Dragons.

“Anfernee did a lot for us,” said Lake Placid boys basketball coach Jon Million. “He was our leading scorer, handled the ball for us and has excellent basketball sense.

“He’s only going to get better.”

Gus Owens, sophomore, Avon Park: Owens was a force at forward and averaged 13.3 points and 6.3 rebounds a game for the Red Devils.

“Gus had some big games for us,” said Avon Park boys basketball coach Marty O’Hora. “He has a lot of potential and is working on being more consistent.”

Josh Austin, senior, Sebring: Austin did a lot of things that don’t show up in the stat book averaging 7.1 points and 7.2 rebounds as a forward for the Blue Streaks.

“Josh did a lot of the little things to help us be successful,” Harris said. “He battled every game, was a bulldog on the boards and played a lot bigger than his size.”

Nick Tuason, junior, Lake Placid: Tuason averaged 10.5 points and 2.3 steals a game at guard for the Green Dragons.

“Nick anticipated well and was our second-leading scorer,” Million said. “

Alfred Brown, junior, Avon Park: Brown was a threat at guard and averaged 11.3 points and 3.2 steals a game.

“Alfred is very athletic and had a solid season for us,” O’Hora said. “He is only going to get better and I’m looking forward to next year.”

Gary Demarest, junior, Sebring: Demarest was versatile and had the ability to play a number of positions while averaging 7.3 points and 8.3 rebounds a game for the Blue Streaks.

“Gary always gave a great effort,” said Harris. “He’s a great kid, has a lot of potential and should be a force for us next year.”

Heath Harris, senior, Lake Placid: Harris averaged 4.2 points and 3.2 rebounds a game at forward for the Green Dragons.

“Heath was our leading rebounder and battled hard on the boards at forward for us,” Million said.

Recaris Burley, sophomore, Avon Park: Burley played guard and averaged 10.1 points and 2.8 assists a game.

“Recarius stepped up when we faced some adversity as a team and helped us win some big games,” O’Hora said. “He had a great attitude and kept us going in the right direction.”

Terrell Williams, junior, Sebring: Williams improved as the season progressed and averaged 4.4 points and 1.3 steals a game at his guard position.

“Terrell really learned a lot this season,” Harris said. “He’s going to step up next year and do a lot of things for us because he has a lot of ability.”

Tyrone Perry, sophomore, Avon Park: Perry averaged 8.2 points and 7.5 rebounds a game for the Red Devils.

“Tyrone was clutch down the stretch and played a big role in us winning the district tournament,” O’Hora said.

Luke Ancrum, sophomore, Sebring: Ancrum came on strong during the season by averaging 8.6 points and 7.6 rebounds a game as a center for the Blue Streaks.

“Luke is very coachable and did a great job in the paint for us,” Harris said. “

Jovan Pratt, senior, Avon Park: Pratt was a forward and averaged 8.1 points and 2.1 blocks per game.

“Jovan was clutch for us, was versatile and could guard a number of different style players,” O’Hora said.

Steve Roberts, senior, Avon Park: Roberts averaged 4.3 points and 4.2 rebounds a game in the paint for the Red Devils.

“Steve played hard and had a great attitude,” O’Hora said. “He did whatever we needed and was a team leader.”

Honorable Mention: Scott Colley, sophomore, Lake Placid: Colley averaged 4.1 points and 2.1 rebounds a game at forward for the Green Dragons.

“Scott was one of our inside guys and did a good job against bigger players,” Million said. “He’s a good shooter and always gave a great effort.”

Connor Cook, freshman, Sebring: Cook averaged 4.5 points and 2.8 assists a game during the season.

“Connor has a great attitude and played hard all the time,” Harris said. “He’s going to be a great player by the time he graduates.”

Jonah Brown, senior, Lake Placid: Brown scored 23 points in the Green Dragons district tournament win over Mulberry. Brown averaged 4.7 points and 1.6 rebounds a game during the season.

“Jonah was consistent for us,” Million said. “He had a couple of big games and has a lot of upside.”

Coach of the Year For guiding his team to the Class 4A-District 10 tournament championship in his first year, Avon Park’s Marty O’Hora has been selected as the Highlands Today All-Highlands Boys Basketball Coach of the Year.

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