UA HOOPS

McDonald's All American Game: UA recruits are big stars in big game

Gordon scores 24, is named most valuable for winning West
2013-04-04T00:00:00Z 2014-08-01T11:30:43Z McDonald's All American Game: UA recruits are big stars in big gameBruce Pascoe Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star
April 04, 2013 12:00 am  • 

CHICAGO - Rondae Hollis-Jefferson was only on the floor briefly against future Arizona Wildcats teammate Aaron Gordon on Wednesday, but that was enough.

Gordon threw down a dizzying array of dunks on his way to the McDonald's All American MVP award, collecting 24 points and eight rebounds to lead the West to a 110-99 victory over the East, and Hollis-Jefferson nearly felt Gordon's destruction firsthand.

"I got in at the end against him, and he almost dunked on me," Hollis-Jefferson said. "I said, 'That's not right, man. That's not right.'"

Instead, Gordon settled on dunking over just about everyone else on the East team and, in some cases, threw them down when nobody was within a mile of the basket. He became Arizona's first-ever outright MVP of the McDonald's game, though Chase Budinger shared the award in 2006 with Kevin Durant, and Khalid Reeves did the same with Shawn Bradley in 1990.

Gordon dunked on the first play of the game and delivered so many crowd-pleasing dunks that he generated as much applause as Duke-bound hometown hero Jabari Parker from the 15,818 fans at the United Center.

Gordon dunked with one hand. With two hands. With guys on him.

And on the break, where he did a 360-degree spin before one dunk and lofted the ball up to himself on another.

Then, after the game, he talked not so much about all those dunks as the engineering behind his performance.

"I try to focus on the technical parts of basketball," Gordon said. "In an all-star game where it's not that structured, that really helps."

Gordon actually wound up with a stat line that showed he did more than just dunk. He had two steals and two assists to one turnover, while playing credible defense in the kind of game that isn't known for it.

"A lot of people focus on shooting, passing, scoring," Gordon said. "What I try to focus on is every single aspect of the game. Every single aspect."

His future teammate appeared to take the same approach to heart.

Hollis-Jefferson, named the Pennsylvania 4A high school MVP earlier Wednesday, played only three minutes in the first half while picking up two quick fouls. But he later chased after a loose ball and hounded the West team during one possession when the West was called for a 10-second violation because it did not cross the halfcourt line.

"That's what I like to bring to the table, a lot of energy and defense," Hollis-Jefferson said. "Everybody here knows we can score. Everybody knows we're good players. That's why we're here. So I just stepped outside the box and decided to do something I love to do and play defense."

Hollis-Jefferson finished with nine points, two rebounds, two assists, two turnovers and one steal.

Although his East team took the loss, both Hollis-Jefferson and Gordon were able to leave the game with a smile. That wasn't the case when their high school careers ended last month, with both losing in their respective state finals.

While the appearance of Gordon and Archbishop Mitty in the California Open Division final was something of a surprise - the San Jose school had to upset talent-laden Sheldon High School of Sacramento to get there - it wound up losing to Mater Dei High School in the final.

Although Gordon had 22 points, 20 rebounds and four blocks against Mater Dei, he also had nine turnovers. Mitty had 22 turnovers overall, and Mater Dei took advantage in a 50-45 win.

"If we had that game back, we would have definitely won," Gordon said. "I had a lot of turnovers. I was a step slow.

"I was up too late the night before."

Hollis-Jefferson's Chester (Pa.) High School team may have also been guilty of taking it too easy. They went undefeated last season and had beaten Lower Merion three straight times … but lost to it 63-47 in the Pennsylvania 4A final.

"It hurt us a lot because you're not used to losing, and then when you get that first loss, it hits you," Hollis-Jefferson said. "It wakes you up, makes you hungry and back on track."

Rim shots

• Andrew Wiggins of Canada led the East team in scoring with 19 points, and Kentucky-bound Julius Randle led the East in rebounding with seven. Gordon and Parker were the West's leading rebounders with eight boards each.

• Of the other Pac-12 representatives, Cal-bound Jabari Bird had nine points, three rebounds and three assists, and Washington-bound Nigel Williams-Goss had 10 points and six assists.

• In the girls game earlier Wednesday, Tennessee signees Jordan Reynolds and Mercedes Russell both posted double-doubles while leading the West to a 92-64 win over the East. The game featured three Pac-12-bound players: Washington's Kelsey Plum (seven points, two steals), Stanford's Kailee Johnson (four points, three rebounds), and Stanford's Erica McCall (seven points, seven rebounds).

On StarNet: Follow the Cats through the offseason at azstarnet.com/pascoe

WEST 110, EAST 99

EAST

Selden 5-7 1-3 13, Wiggins 6-10 7-8 19, Randle 5-9 1-2 11, Johnson 6-11 0-0 12, Hill 1-5 0-0 2, Jackson 2-5 1-2 5, Barber 4-10 2-5 11, Hollis-Jefferson 3-5 3-4 9, Walker 2-6 0-2 4, Frazier 2-7 2-2 6, Vonleh 1-2 1-6 3, Hicks 2-6 0-1 4, Meeks 0-3 0-0 0. Totals 39-86 18-35 99.

WEST

Portis 4-5 3-4 12, Parker 4-13 2-2 10, Gordon 10-17 4-6 24, Aa.Harrison 3-8 0-0 6, An.Harrison 5-5 0-0 10, Williams-Goss 4-6 2-2 10, Young 3-6 0-0 6, Jones 2-4 0-0 4, Bird 3-5 2-2 9, Lee 1-3 0-0 2, Martin 4-7 2-4 10, Hamilton 2-7 1-2 7. Totals 45-86 16-22 110.

Halftime-WEST 56-44. 3-Point Goals-EAST 3-22 (Selden 2-4, Barber 1-4, Hollis-Jefferson 0-1, Hicks 0-1, Wiggins 0-2, Hill 0-2, Walker 0-2, Meeks 0-2, Frazier 0-4), WEST 4-17 (Hamilton 2-5, Bird 1-1, Porter 1-2, Parker 0-1, Williams-Goss 0-1, Young 0-1, Martin 0-1, Jones 0-2, Harrison 0-3). Fouled Out-Parker. Rebounds-EAST 52 (Randle 7), WEST 48 (Parker 8). Assists-EAST 18 (Jackson, Barber 4), WEST 31 (Williams-Goss 6). Total Fouls-EAST 16, WEST 20. A-15,818.

Doubled down

UA recruits Aaron Gordon and Rondae Hollis-Jefferson fared well at the McDonald's All American Game:

Aaron Gordon (West, below) • MVP

24 points on 10-for-17 shooting, eight rebounds

Rondae Hollis-Jefferson (East)

Nine points on 3-for-5 shooting

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Pac-12 basketball standings

  Conference Overall
Team W L T PCT W L T PCT
Arizona 0 0 0 0.000 5 0 0 1.000
Washington 0 0 0 0.000 3 0 0 1.000
Stanford 0 0 0 0.000 4 0 0 1.000
UCLA 0 0 0 0.000 4 0 0 1.000
Colorado 0 0 0 0.000 3 1 0 0.750
California 0 0 0 0.000 3 1 0 0.750
Oregon State 0 0 0 0.000 3 1 0 0.750
Utah 0 0 0 0.000 2 1 0 0.667
Oregon 0 0 0 0.000 3 2 0 0.600
Arizona State 0 0 0 0.000 3 2 0 0.600
USC 0 0 0 0.000 3 3 0 0.500
Washington State 0 0 0 0.000 1 2 0 0.333

AP Top 25


Pac-12 basketball schedule

Teams Date Time
Kansas State at
Arizona
11/25 68-72
VCU at
Oregon
11/25 77-63
Delaware at
Stanford
11/25 47-84
Cal State-Fullerton at
USC
11/25 49-53
Texas-Pan American at
Utah
11/26 6:00 pm
Auburn at
Oregon State
11/26 7:00 pm
Cal Poly at
California
11/26 8:00 pm
San Diego State at
Arizona
11/26 8:00 pm
San Jose State at
Washington
11/27 9:00 pm
UC-Santa Barbara at
Washington State
11/27 10:00 pm
Colgate at
Arizona State
11/29 12:00 am
Alabama State at
Utah
11/29 12:00 am
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