The Golden Eagles were set to tip off against vaunted Omaha Central (Neb.) this week as part of the City of Palms Classic in Fort Myers, Fla.
The 40th annual tournament — held Dec. 18-22 — is among the premier prep basketball showcases in the country.
Eagle’s Landing coach Clay Crump, assessing the field, knows his squad has its work cut out for it.
“It’s strong competition to say the least … we’re the only team [there] coming from out of state not in the top 25 nationally,” Crump said.
Omaha Central, like virtually every team in the tourney, boasts a roster brimming with Division I talent. Those Eagles are one win away from tying the all-time Nebraska consecutive wins record.
“We’d love to get in the way of that,” Crump added.
Eagle’s Landing is certainly capable of making all the noise it can muster in City of Palms.
Crump’s talent-laden squad is coming off back-to-back GHSA Class 4-A final four appearances. Each time, the Golden Eagles fell to eventual champ Columbia.
Eagle’s Landing has size and skill in spades.
Three senior starters return from last season’s campaign: uber-athletic 6 foot point guard Isaiah Dennis, 6 foot 9 power forward Desmond Ringer and 6 foot 5 combo guard Eric Wortham. Dennis is a highlight waiting to happen and Ringer — a South Carolina commitment — is automatic down low. Wortham, a Middle Tennessee commitment, is the reigning Region 4-AAAA player of the year; his absence due to a medical emergency might have been the difference in the team’s postseason loss to Columbia.
The players occupying the rest of Crump’s rotation are a talented bunch as well.
Jordan Session, a 6 foot 8 junior power forward, played a lot of significant minutes last season and is expected to be a big contributor. The same goes for former starter Trevin Joseph, a senior 2-guard. The presence of backup guards Bradley Dewberry, Maurice Green and power forward Tyler Guice and 6 foot 7 forward Chris Davenport — a transfer from Florida — give the Golden Eagles the kind of depth most teams would envy.