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Berkeley High School
Moncks Corner

Stags basketball ready to contend for state title

 

By David Shelton

Senior Writer

Moncks Corner – Aside from a few solid teams, Berkeley’s history in boys basketball has been pretty generic over the years.

But, the 2018-19 Stags aim to make this season one of the best in school history and early returns give the feeling they could do just that.

Coach Joseph Wallace’s squad has opened this season with wins in 14 of their first 15 games, with the only loss coming to highly-regarded SCISA power Cardinal Newman in showcase event in early January.

The Stags are aiming for a third consecutive region title but their first as a Class AAAAA program. The entered play on January 15th as the second-ranked team in Class AAAAA, believed to be the highest statewide ranking in school history.

Berkeley made a solid showing in last year’s Class AAAA state playoffs before losing to Wilson in the Lower State semi-final round. This year’s team has the potential to make a deeper run.

“We have some seniors, a really good group of leaders, so that really helps,” Wallace says. “We have the experience of last year and a lot of these guys played a lot for us. Experience and leadership are our strengths and we want to lean on those things as we get ready for the playoffs.”

Berkeley has the ingredients in terms of their personnel to be a tough out in the postseason. The Stags have solid guard play in seniors DJ Chisolm and Cameron Fordham. Chisolm, known more as one of the state’s top football players, is a solid point guard averages 10.6 points and 3.5 assists per game. Fordham is the team’s top three-point shooter, averaging 9.9 points while shooting 45 percent from beyond the arc.

On the inside, the Stags are powered by seniors Ishan White and Trevur Smalls, a pair of all-state candidates. White averages 16.5 points and 9.7 rebounds per game while shooting 58 percent from the field. Smalls is averaging 14.5 points and 6.5 rebounds per game, shooting 53 percent from the floor.

 Irvonte Yeadon rounds out the starting lineup with seniors Blake Southard and Keshawn Wicks provide depth off the bench. Hakeem Meggett and Solomon Butler also see considerable action.

Berkeley averages 71.3 points per game and Wallace says when his team plays within the system, they can be difficult to defend.

“We have to share the ball and set each other up to score,” Wallace said. “When we do that, we are difficult. When we play team ball and pass the basketball, that’s when we are at our best. That’s something we push every day, share the ball.”

Berkeley appears to be the strong favorite in region 7-AAAAA. The biggest threats may come from Wando and Goose Creek. Berkeley opened region play with a 20-point win over Goose Creek.

“Lot of basketball left to play and we want to continue to get better and more consistent with each game,” Wallace said.

Meanwhile, the Berkeley girls are sitting at 5-8 after 13 games under coach Crystal Peace. Continuing to lead the way are seniors LeeToria Dorsey and D’Kerra Middleton. Both players are averaging in double figures this season.

Chisolm commits to MTSU

Berkeley receiver DJ Chisolm, the region 7-AAAAA player of the year and a Class AAAAA all-state selection, made his college choice known via twitter on January 13th. Chisolm, who was a previous commitment to East Carolina, announced his will attend Middle Tennessee State University in the fall.

As a junior, Chisolm set school records for receptions, receiving yards and touchdowns. He caught more than 130 passes for more than 2,000 yards over the last two seasons.

 

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