SUWANEE – Heat Check entered Bob Gibbons Tournament of “Future” Champions on a mission, which was to win the 14U title. They didn’t hope it would happen, Heat Check predicted it would happen.
On Sunday, Heat Check had a chance to back up their prediction. They managed to handle every change or pressure placed in front of them against the Atlanta Xpress before winning 67-53 at Suwanee Sports Academy. Point guard Christian Turner was named the Tournament’s Most Valuable Player after scoring a game-high 18 points to lead Heat Check.
This was the team’s second consecutive title for the Gwinnett-based organization.
Heat Check led throughout the entire game with the help of Turner and Demarcus Simmons, who finished with 11 points and five rebounds to be named to the All-Tournament team. Kevon Tucker added 12 points. Jordan Lyons and Obinna Ofodile both contributed with 11 points apiece.
Being able to balance their scoring and keep under control was the key to winning the game against a talented Xpress club.
“We are very poised,” Heat Check coach Jerome Weaver said. “We do a lot of adjustments and run sets. We are disciplined. To beat us an entire game is a lot.”
Weaver knows his teams is battle tested having played some of the best teams in the country earlier this season. Playing against a long and athletic Xpress team did not faze them. The game and the level of talent attracted college coaches who were allowed at the event because it was the NCAA evaluation period. However, they were asked to leave because while it was an evaluation period, college coaches are not allowed to scout players 14 and under, unless they are playing up and age group.
Nevertheless, those who were allowed to watch the game had a chance to see a Heat Check team that is not going to run from the competition. They have size and a point guard that will help them compete for a national title later on this summer.
Atlanta trailed 46-41 late in the second half. They attempted a full court press and while it did cause some problems for Heat Check it was not enough to disrupt them enough form keeping their lead.
Chad Clay finished with 15 points to lead the Xpress. MJ Walker chipped in with 12 points.Adam Ellis added 11. Clay and Walker were selected to the All-Tournament team. Ellis was an honorable mention. Isaiah Johnson and Mattisse Edward completed the All-Tournament team.