You'll have to take it on faith that I was planning on writing this blog post BEFORE Ridgeview senior Erica McCall was named a McDonald's All-American on Thursday, but now that that's happened, I suppose I'd better not bury the lede.
If you're a basketball fan, you know the McDonald's All-American Game as the home of the nation's best high school players. These are typically the guys you're going to see dominating the college basketball landscape (for a year or two on the boys side, for four on the girls) and the NBA and WNBA a few years down the road. It's a who's who of high school basketball players.
And now McCall is on it. She joins Nikki Blue (West High, 2002, who went to UCLA) and Robert Swift (2004, who entered the NBA Draft directly) as Kern County's only selections. McCall, a 6-foor-3 forward, is the No. 11 player in her class according to ESPN and has signed with Stanford.
So that's cool — the McDonald's All-American Girls Game will be televised live at 4 p.m. on April 3 from Chicago's United Center, and the local girl will be front and center.
But now for the original reason I was going to blog about Erica McCall. Stay with me, because this is a little convoluted.
I tweeted out Wednesday night a score for the morbidly curious: Garces 88, East 2 in girls basketball. Lopsided games in girls hoops aren't all that uncommon — one team presses, the other doesn't have the ball handlers to get the ball across halfcourt, and things get ugly in a hurry – but this one was particularly one-sided in part because Garces dresses only six players and so must play at least four starters for the entire game no matter what.
And so, when I tweeted out the score, many of my followers — those in high school, anyway — had their fun with it. You know, "How could you score only two points?", "Did anybody show up?", etc.
Then, in stepped the best girls basketball player in the Central Section.
Pretty cool that the top player in the area would stick up for another team, then quiet her classmates with one tweet. That's humility and perspective from a player in a high-profile spot that doesn't always promote humility and perspective.
Good on you, Erica. Oh, and congrats on All-American, too.