Coral Springs, Florida - In addition to the tournament's traditional Sweet Sixteen and Publix Challenge brackets, the 2011 Kreul Classic national high school basketball tournament will include a high profile, four-team pool challenge during its 22nd annual competition this December 16th through 20th at Coral Springs City Gymnasium.
Featuring four stand-out programs with no shortage of Division 1 talent, the prestigious tournament is set to deliver a first class show fueled by the storied Celtics of St. Patrick (Elizabeth, NJ), Brooklyn's South Shore (NY) and Florida powers Northeast and Cardinal Gibbons, both from Ft. Lauderdale.
The perennial national powerhouse St. Patrick anticipates another Top 5 pre-season nod. They are poised for continued success as they begin a fresh era with long-time assistant coach Chris Chevannes assuming head coaching duties from the legendary Kevin Boyle, now at Montverde Academy in central Florida. For the past twenty years, Chevannes served as Boyle's right-hand man, and it was during this time that the prep program soared into the national spotlight producing elite Division 1 recruits and NBA players including Kyrie Irving (2011 No. 1 NBA Draft pick by Cleveland Cavaliers) and Mike Gilchrist (Kentucky.)
A documentary of St. Patrick's final season under Boyle's leadership, Prayer For A Perfect Season, premieres October 25th at 9pm EST on HBO. The 90-minute film by award winning director Michael Levin follows the Celtic's 2010-11 quest for a national championship, and concludes with a final showdown between undefeated St. Patrick and archrival St. Anthony's (1994 Kreul Classic runner-up) from New Jersey.
The remaining teams in the bracket also offer solid hardcourt credentials. Last year, Cardinal Gibbons made their second consecutive state appearance before finishing the season as the 2010-11 FHSAA Class 4A runner-up, and cross-town rival, Northeast, brings a seasoned squad led by 6-8 Demetrius Henry[ ranked at No. 26 on Rivals.com list of top power forwards for the class of 2012. Henry will be aided by 6-2 shooting guard Richard Lee who has already earned offers from Florida, Maryland, Kansas State and Virginia Tech. New York's South Shore features a talented backcourt of Division 1 prospects in junior Terrence Samuel (14ppg, 6apg) and sophomore Doudmy St. Hilaire. A 6-3 combo guard, Samuel is rated among the top 60 players in his class and 6-2 St. Hilaire already counts South Carolina and West Virginia among his suitors.
The fierce contenders must play one game against each opponent with the much anticipated competition revealing a single champion determined by record and other subsequent criteria if necessary. Nightly pairings and game times will be announced in November.