Unity Key As Team Virginia Preps For Deep South Classic

When Coach Ric Evans and his 15U Team Virginia squads heads to the prestigious Deep South Classic in April, they will not have a lot of height, but they will have plenty of unity.

“I’m very happy with this team,” Evans said. “These girls are going into their third year together, and they have developed a good camaraderie. They understand each other, on and off the court, so I really think this is going to be a fun year.

“We’re not very big — we don’t have anyone who is 6-0, but all of them can handle the ball, and they are quick and athletic. We’re going to play a lot of full court man-to-man and do our best to force the tempo.”

The 2014 Deep South Classic will be played in Raleigh, NC, on April 25-27. Now in its 17th year, the Deep South Classic annually hosts many of the nation’s elite travel teams in a field that will eclipse 200 squads, and hundreds of collegiate coaches will be on hand searching for talent. The 2014 event will mark the second year that the Deep South Classic has been held at the Raleigh Convention Center. The venue was a tremendous success in its debut last year, with all games played at one site on 18 courts, and it is in a convenient central location.

Team Virginia will be loaded with talented perimeter players, including Ashley Evans (2016, 5-10, G), Secret Bryant (2015, 5-6, PG), Faith Begin (2016, 5-9, G), Kiala Marshall (2016, 5-8, G) and Hope Simmons (2017, 5-5, PG).

“Ashley is a versatile, intelligent player. She can score against contact when she goes to the basket, and she can shoot the three,” the coach said. “Secret is a very quick, very athletic player who knows how to control the game. She has a great knack for creating a shot in the lane, she has a nice outside shot, and she is a great defensive player who does a good job of anticipating passes. Faith is the most athletic player we have, and she is a lock down defender. She always covers the other team’s top offensive player. Kiala is another defensive specialist, and she has a nice mid-range game and perimeter shot. Hope has a beautiful shooting stroke and an amazing floater. She is leading her high school team in scoring as a freshman. She didn’t travel last summer, but I think she will get a lot of attention this year.”

Bret McCormick, the analyst for the All Star Girls Report, added his perspective on the top prospects from Team Virginia:

Ashley Evans: “She is an athletic combo guard who has a scorer’s mentality.”

Secret Bryant: “Secret is a quick, true point guard. She can score, but he forte is running the show and leading a team.”

Faith Begin: “She is a very athletic, high energy type player who defends and does a lot of other little things for a team.”

Kiala Marshall: “Marshall is a very good athlete who is an strong defender, and she is a scoring threat with a nice mid-range game.”

Hope Simmons: “Simmons is a scoring point guard who has a nice runner. She is something of a sleeper to watch this summer.”