Brandon Austin has played some big time basketball in his scholastic career at Imhotep Charter. Austin, a 6-foot-6, 180-pound senior, had to play some great basketball in order to hold off Roberts Vaux and its outstanding player Rysheed Jordan to post a 67-66 victory to help Imhotep Charter capture the Public League championship.
Austin had 23 points, seven rebounds and six assists. He was named the game’s Most Valuable Player for his efforts. He needed a game like this especially with Jordan scorching the Panthers for a game high 45 points. Austin needed some help from his teammates as well because he fouled out with 45 seconds remaining in the game.
“I believe in my team,” Austin said. “My team was there. We had each other coming down the stretch. So, this is a blessing from God. I was pretty nervous because Vaux is a very good team in closing games out. He’s (Rysheed Jordan) a very good player. We’re good friends. It was just a good game out there. It feels good to be back out there on top as a champion.”
Jordan was nothing short of spectacular. He knocked down 21-for-23 shots from the free throw line. But it seemed like whenever the game was on the line, Jordan delivered with a clutch shot, including a 26 foot three point shot down the stretch. Jordan, a 6-foot-3 senior, will make his college decision in the spring. His final three choices are UCLA, Temple and St. John’s.
Austin will be playing Division I basketball at Providence. He’s certainly one of the best players in the Philadelphia area. His teammates aren’t too shabby either. Abraham Massaley, a 5-foot-10, 160-pound point guard, scored the winning basket. Massaley had seven points including some crucial foul shots. Deryl Bagwell was the team’s second leading scorer with 15 points. Basil Thompson had nine points and nine rebounds.
“Everybody contributed (to the championship),” Austin said. “I trusted my team. Now, we got the ball back and the championship. That’s all it is. It’s the team.”
Andre Noble, Imhotep Charter head coach, has watched Austin develop over his scholastic career. Of course, Austin had one of the biggest shots of the game. He made a 23-foot three-pointer that banked in off the glass. It was one of many big shots by the Panthers.
“He’s made a lot of big shots obviously in his career,” Noble said. “But he got a lot of help from his teammates. I’m really proud of them.”
Contact staff writer Donald Hunt at (215) 893-5719 or firstname.lastname@example.org.