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January 12, 2013

BLOG: Chickasha's Sylvester more than up to the challenge

CHICKASHA — In Friday’s game between the Chickasha High School boys basketball team and Redemption Christian Homeschool Academy, Chickasha senior center Joey Sylvester was charged with matching up against center Khadeem Lattin, a 6-foot-9 player with extreme athleticism.

A quick browsing of Lattin’s recruiting profile on ESPN shows that he is a three-star recruit with offers from Oklahoma, Texas, Baylor, Alabama, Arizona, Georgetown, TCU and Texas A&M. And he’s just a junior.

He has a strong basketball pedigree, and has even spent time in Europe improving his skills. Don’t take my word for it, though. Sports Illustrated took notice and did a feature story about him:  http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2012/writers/luke_winn/06/18/Khadeem.Lattin/index.html

That said, Sylvester thoroughly out-played Lattin for every minute of Friday’s game. Sylvester led a team effort and great coaching game plan that held Lattin to only seven points.

Sylvester, meanwhile, scored 26 points, including four 3-pointers, several of them right over the outstretched hand of Lattin.

Sylvester played a complete game both inside and outside, and on both ends of the floor. I already had a lot of respect for his ability as a player, but seeing Sylvester dominate the game against such high-level competition just solidified that the senior can match up with pretty much anybody, whether they’re from Oklahoma or anywhere else.

The Fightin’ Chicks lost the game, but if they play like that the rest of the year, they can hang with almost any team they’ll see.

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