Bulldog Signees Impress in Senior Seasons
April 15, 2016
RUSTON – Louisiana Tech head coach Eric Konkol came to Ruston to continue the standard of excellence that has been set over the past few years.
That was accomplished this past season with the Bulldogs racking up 23 wins, eight of those coming against teams that played in the postseason (most since 1989) and seven coming versus opponents who registered 20+ wins themselves (most since 1991).
LA Tech also made its fourth straight postseason appearance, a feat that had not been accomplished 1988-92.
Looking to continue this standard is the four-person fall signing class – the Dallas area trio of Oliver Powell, Jalen Harris and JaColby Pemberton as well as Baltimore point guard DaQuan Bracey – who all had impressive senior seasons at their respective high school.
Powell, a 6-foot-8-inch forward out of Rowlett High School, was named TABC 6A All-Region after leading the Eagles to an overall record of 24-7 while advancing to the Region II quarterfinals for the first time in school history.
He also garnered MVP honors of district 11-6A in helping the team win the district title, clinching it with a win over Garland Lakeview Centennial in a game where he registered 20 points and 14 rebounds, as well as being Area Champions.
For the season, Powell averaged 15.5 points, 8.5 rebounds and 1.3 blocks per game
Also playing in the Texas 6A classification was Harris who did not see action until Jan. 5, missing over half the season due to an injury.
Even after missing all of that time, the 6-foot-4-inch guard out of Duncanville High School, was named District 8-6A Offensive Player of the Year for a second straight season after averaging 23 points per game while shooting 55 percent from the field and 45 percent from three-point range.
Harris lit up the stat sheets after his return, dropping a career-high 44 points in an overtime loss to Cedar Hill and scoring 32 points in a victory over Grand Prairie to clinch a playoff berth for the Panthers who finished with a 17-16 overall record.
For the season, he also averaged seven rebounds, four assists and two steals per game to go along with his scoring numbers.
The last of the Dallas Trio is Pemberton, the 6-foot-6-inch forward out of Lancaster High School, who capped off a stellar season and career for the powerhouse Tigers that finished with a 37-2 overall record and a second consecutive 5A Texas state title.
For the year, he averaged 20.8 points and 9.8 rebounds per game while being named 14-5A District Co-MVP, TABC 5A All-State and TABC 5A All-Region.
Pemberton was unstoppable in the state playoffs, scoring 20+ points and averaging a double-double in four games including a 22-point, 10-rebound effort in a third round win over Lake Ridge which was his 100th career victory at Lancaster.
Bracey (better known as “DayDay”) shared similar success while playing in the Baltimore Catholic League. The 5-foot-10-inch point guard was named BCL Co-Player of the Year and All-MIAA A Conference after averaging 17 points, five rebounds and five assists per game.
In the process, he led St. Frances Academy to the MIAA A Conference title, defeating No. 1 ranked Mount Saint Joseph’s in a game where he registered 23 points and nine boards.
The Panthers finished with a 30-9 overall record, advancing to the semifinals of the BCL Tournament. Bracey hit a milestone of 1,000 career points and represented Team Baltimore in the third annual Crab Ball Classic All-Star game.
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