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• Part of Jefferson High’s basketball history will be on display Saturday, when the school plays host to the Interstate Shootout, a 2 p.m. exhibition game featuring players from Oregon and Washington.
The Oregon team will have ex-Jeff stars Brandon Brooks, Brandon Lincoln, Ime Udoka and Thomas Gardner. Others expected to play include Fred Jones and Kevin Love.
“It’s a fund-raiser for our athletic program,” says Marshall Haskins, Jefferson’s coach and athletic director. “And it’s a fun time for our community.”
Brooks, 22, has mostly recovered from a leg injury that ended his career at Southern Cal.
“He’s still in great shape, and if he could pass a physical, he could play in the NBA,” Jefferson assistant coach Paul Kelly says. “He can still go full bore.”
After the Interstate Shootout, some of the players will head to Grant for the 5 p.m. semifinals of the Portland Pro-Am League, which includes Chris Stephens, JR Moore and others.
•Jefferson’s boys basketball team did well in two late-July tournaments.
At a Las Vegas tourney that attracted more than 200 of the nation’s top AAU all-star teams, the Friends of Jefferson squad reached the Sweet 16. The next week, the team made the quarterfinals of the Best of Summer tournament at Loyola Marymount in Los Angeles.
“We felt really good about how well the team played,” Kelly says. “You can kind of tell how well you did by how many phone calls from college coaches you get the week after. We got a lot.”
Kelly says the Demos all have scholarship opportunities. Senior forward Brian Morris has Oregon State, Fresno State and Boston College chasing him. Senior point guard Mac Hopson is looking at Air Force, Cornell and other schools. Junior guards Lathen Wallace and Marquis Hall have attracted big-time schools, too. Wallace got calls from Stanford. Hall has heard from Kansas and Georgetown.
Kelly says the players wanted to stick together this summer to prepare for a state title run. Last season, the Demos lost in the state playoffs.
“The guys felt pretty empty with what happened last year,” Kelly says.
— Cliff Pfenning