3 Arkansas signees will play during state championship weekend

By: Dudley E. Dawson
Published: Sunday, March 4, 2018
Fort Smith Northside guard Isaiah Joe (10) goes for a basket during the 7A boys state championship basketball game against North Little Rock at Bank of the Ozarks Arena on Satuday, March 11, 2017, in Hot Springs.
Photo by Mara Kuhn
Fort Smith Northside guard Isaiah Joe (10) goes for a basket during the 7A boys state championship basketball game against North Little Rock at Bank of the Ozarks Arena on Satuday, March 11, 2017, in Hot Springs.

— Three Arkansas signees and the fourth matchup between Class 6A powers Jonesboro and West Memphis are among the highlights of the state basketball championships that starts Thursday at Bank of Ozarks Arena in Hot Springs.

West Memphis (28-3) and defending champion Jonesboro (25-5) will meet Saturday at 12:45 p.m., according to a schedule released by the Arkansas Activities Association on Sunday.

The game will feature Arkansas signee Desi Sills (6-2, 180 pounds) and Blue Devils sophomore sensation Chris Moore (6-6, 200).

“They are fun for the fans, but they are no fun to prepare for,” Jonesboro coach Wes Swift said. “They have seven seniors out of their top nine and they probably have the best sophomore - or one of the top two sophomores - in the state in Chris Moore and they have a junior point guard and that’s their top nine.

“Their senior guards just make winning plays and they are not scared of any moment. The thing I have seen out of West Memphis that maybe I haven’t seen the last three or four years is their ability to defend.

“They are one of the best defensive teams in the state right now. They defend together and offensively they put like four people in double figures almost every game so it shows you that they share the basketball and it is really hard to guard and at the end of the game they have a stud they can go to.”

Arkansas shooting guard signee Isaiah Joe (6-4, 170), who averaged 28 points in his team’s two wins last week, will lead defending 7A champ Fort Smith Northside (21-9) against North Little Rock (26-5) and sophomore Moses Moody on Thursday afternoon at 4:15.

Moody was offered by Arkansas last summer and also has offers from Oklahoma State, Baylor and others.

Little Rock Parkview center and Razorback signee Ethan Henderson (6-9, 180) will lead the Patriots (24-8) against Little Rock Mills (28-3) in the Class 5A state title game Friday at 6 p.m.

The Class 4A state title game Saturday at 4:15 p.m. will feature two of the state’s best junior guards in Issac McBride of Baptist Prep (29-6) and Avery Felts of Jonesboro Westside (26-6).

McBride and Felts both hit game-winning shots at the buzzer on Saturday to lift their teams into the title game.

Thursday, March 8:

• North Little Rock vs. Conway (Class 7A girls), 2:30 p.m.

• North Little Rock vs. Fort Smith Northside (Class 7A boys), 4:15

• Earle vs. Quitman (Class 2A girls), 6 p.m.

• Earle vs. Marked Tree (Class 2A boys), 7:45 pm

Friday, March 9:

• McGehee vs Drew Central (Class 3A boys), 2:30 p.m.

• Charleston vs Mountain View (Class 3A girls), 4:15 p.m.

• LR Parkview vs LR Mills, (Class 5A boys), 6 p.m.

CAC vs Riverview, (Class 4A girls), 7:45 p.m.

Saturday, March 10:

• Jonesboro vs. Greenwood (Class 6A girls), 11 a.m.

• Jonesboro vs. West Memphis (boys), 12:45 p.m.

• Wonderview vs. Mount Vernon–Enola (Class 1A girls), 2:30 pm

• Baptist Prep vs. Jonesboro Westside (Class 4A boys), 4:15 pm

• Watson Chapel vs. Hot Springs, (Class 6A girls), 6 p.m.

• Izard County vs. Guy Perkins (Class 1A boys), 7:45 pm

Discussion

Have a comment on this story? Join the discussion or start a new one on the Forums.