Photo Courtesy of Gerry Wall
BANNER ELK, N.C. – The Lees-McRae College men's basketball team announced the signing of seven student-athletes who are set to join the program for the 2018-19 season. The newest Bobcats include: Andrew Gardner (Myrtle Beach, S.C.), Anthony Hicks (Winston-Salem, N.C.), London England (Lincolnton, N.C.), Kerry Richardson (Riverdale, Ga.), Keith Holmes Jr. (Chesapeake, Va.), Micale Harris (Charlotte, N.C.), Zack Foulks (Columbia, S.C.).
"We are extremely excited about these incoming freshmen," said LMC Head Coach Steve Hardin. "Losing 10 seniors and guys who knew our culture, it was extremely important to us to not only bring in young guys who are talented but also, can continue our culture and Fire mentality. All of these players have the characteristics and mindsets to not only be great Bobcats but also great ambassadors for our campus and in our Banner Elk Community. We invested a lot of time getting to know these guys and understand their personalities, as well as their skill set on the floor. Our staff did a great job traveling all over the southeast to see and meet with the guys, their parents, and their coaches to make sure they were a good fit for what we are trying to do here on Dunk Mountain! We feel like these guys are the major core for our program for the next four years!"
Andrew Gardner- 6'7 Forward- Myrtle Beach, SC (Sacastee HS)
- 13.0 points, 11 rebounds and three assists per game
- Proposed business major
- All-Region selection
- South Carolina All-Hoop Zone
Coach's Take - "Andrew was a highly recruited big from Myrtle Beach, SC and he brings our team much needed size and versatility," said Hardin "He will be able to play multiple positions with the skill set that he has. He also brings toughness and grit to this year's team. Andrew is a hard worker who has tremendous potential, we are extremely excited about Andrew."
Anthony Hicks – 6-4 Guard – Winston-Salem, N.C. (North Forsyth HS)
- 21.9 points, 9.2 rebounds and 3.1 assists per game
- 3A Player of the Year in North Carolina
- Scored over 1,000 points in high school career
- All-Conference players for three seasons
Coach's Take - "Hicks is someone that we have recruited and been watching over the past four years and we are very excited about having him apart of our program," Hardin said of Hicks. "He was highly recruited from the Winston-Salem area and had multiple D1 offers. AJ has great size and can score on all three levels. He has an excellent feel for the game and does a good job of getting his teammates involved. Hicks fits our FIRE system perfectly and we are ready to get to work with him!"
London England – 6-4 Guard – Lincolnton, N.C. (Lincoln Charter School)
- 15.6 points, 7.6 rebounds and 3.2 assists per game in high school
- Was an all-conference player
- Named Most Outstanding Player of the 2017 State Championship Game
- Proposed Biology major
Coach's Take - "London was one of our early signees and has been committed to us for a couple years now and we are ready for him to step onto campus," said Hardin "He won a state championship where he was the MOP and has been a part of multiple 20+ win seasons at the high school level. London is another guy who the community of Banner Elk will embrace and love to watch compete!"
Kerry Richardson – 6-7 Forward – Riverdale, Ga. (Elite Scholars Academy)
- 20 points, 11 rebounds and three assists per game
- Led region in doubles-doubles, free throws and rebounds
- All-State Honorable Mention
- Proposed business major
Coach's Take - "Kerry is a very long athletic wing- forward that we were able to get from the Atlanta, Georgia area that has a huge upside," said Hardin. "We think that with his working habits he will be a sure force in the coming years here at Lees-McRae. We are excited about Kerry, he fits our style very well and will help us keep the title Dunk Mountain."
Keith Holmes Jr. – 6-3 Guard – Chesapeake, Va. (Bishop Sullivan HS)
- Averaged 10 points, three assists and four rebounds per game
- Attended Virginia Top 80 for three years in a row
- Team Captain for three years
- Proposed business and management major
Coach's Take - "Keith, is an early signee as well," Hardin said. "He has been committed to our program since his junior year. Keith is also a versatile player that brings toughness and grit to our team. He will be a glue guy willing to do whatever it takes for our team to win! We are very excited about Keith in our family."
Micale Harris – 6-8 Forward – Charlotte, N.C. (Hopewell HS)
- Averaged seven points, six rebounds and three blocks per game in high school
- Led conference in blocks
- Posted 87 blocks in 28 games
- Proposed criminal justice major
Coach's Take - "We got Micale late in the recruiting process," said Hardin. "He is a very long athletic big, but he continues to work and improve his game. We love Micale because of his defensive toughness, athleticism, and his will to out-work others. He is a true example of a bobcat and glad he is in our family."
Zack Foulks - 6'3 Guard - Columbia, S.C. (A.C. Flora HS)
- Averaged 21 points, seven assists and three steals per game
- Was among the top five scorers in the state of South Carolina
- Named SCBCA South Carolina All-State team
- Proposed Sports Management major
Coach's Take – "We are extremely excited about Zack," said Hardin. "He comes from a winning program and a winning culture in AC Flora High School, out of Columbia, SC. His athleticism, length, and shooting ability can make him a tough player to deal with in the next four years!"