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The Maryland Pride program shifted its schedule last year, and that move has led to further changes for 2015, including a stop at the DC Nationals event.
“We sent one of our teams to the Deep South Classic last year, and they loved it so much that we decided to add some All Star Girls Report events,” explained Pride coach Tony Gorham. “They were very impressed with the level of exposure at the Deep South, as well as the way the event was run at every turn — from the way the games started on time, to the officials, to the facility. They just thought everything was first rate.”
The 2015 DC Nationals will be hosted by the All Star Girls Report staff from July 6-8 in District Heights, Md. The event, which will draw an outstanding national level field, will be played at the NEW 24 facility.
The Pride will be paced in DC by a very talented trio of prospects from the Class of 2016. Jaia Alexander is a 5-11 combo guard who is rated as the No. 215 recruit in the country by ASGR. Madison Cheatham is a 6-4 post player who is listed at No. 231 by ASGR, and Uche Ufochukwu is a 6-4 post from Nigeria.
“Jaia is a player who can do whatever it takes. She can handle it with the best of them, she has a solid body, she is good in traffic, and she defends well,” Gorham said. “Madison has a soft touch and long arms, and she is very physical down low. Uche is very athletic and very active. She is in her first year of high school in America, so she is raw, but she is a great athlete.”
ASGR analyst Bret McCormick also added his perspective on the Pride standouts.
“Alexander is a strong athlete with great fundamentals,” McCormick said. “She is a very good skill set, and she could play any of the three guard spots. Madison is athletic and active, and she can score inside. She also runs the floor very well. Ufochukwu is an outstanding athlete with a long body. She runs well, she works hard, and her skills are coming.”
Gorham is also expecting big things from Alexis King (2017, 5-8, PG), Kephera Stokes (2016, 5-9, G) and Candice Taylor (2016, 5-9, G).
“Alexis is a pure point guard with the quickness to penetrate, and she can shoot the three,” the coach said. “Kephera is super quick and super fast. She plays defense for 94 feet, she is extremely athletic and she can hit the three. Candice has NBA three-point range. She can fill it up from way out.”
“King is a very quick point guard who can handle it, pass it, and run the show. She can also hit the three,” McCormick added. “Stokes is a combo guard with quickness. She is good in the open floor, and she has a nice mid-range game. Taylor can really shoot the basketball. She has impressive range.”