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February 6, 2008 > Local student athletes nominated for McDonald's All-American Basketball Games

Local student athletes nominated for McDonald's All-American Basketball Games

By Biff Jones

This year, three players from the Tri-City area have been nominated for the McDonald's High School Basketball Team to play in the McDonald's All-American Basketball Games. For the boy's team, there is Hunter Hayden, a 6'8" player from James Logan High School in Union City and Chris Jones, a 6'3" guard from Newark Memorial High School who is bound for Fresno State next fall. Hoping to make the girl's team is Alex Carbonel, a 5'6" guard out of American High School in Fremont.

Since 1977 the top boy's high school senior basketball players nationwide have been selected to the McDonald's High School Basketball Team, and in 2002 the girl's team was added.

The first boy's team played a team of all-stars from the Maryland, Virginia and D.C. area in the Capital Classic in Washington, D.C. and included Earvin "Magic" Johnson on the McDonald's team. Starting in 1978, the first McDonald's All-American game was played at the Spectrum in Philadelphia, and in 1979 the game included its greatest collection of stars including, Ralph Sampson, Dominique Wilkins, Isiah Thomas, James Worthy, John Paxson and Byron Scott. Over the years the game has included, Michael Jordan, Shaquille O'Neal, Kobe Bryant, LeBron James, Jason Kidd, and scores of others.

Stars participating in the girl's game have included, Candice Parker, Shanna Zolman, Ann Strother, Ivory Latta and twins Courtney and Ashley Paris, daughters of former 49ers' all-pro lineman, Bubba Paris.

Awards are given to a member of both the boys and girls teams in honor of former ULCA coach, John Wooden and former DeMatha High School of Hyattsville, MD coach, Morgan Wootten (1274 career wins). Both coaches have been involved with the game since its inception.

This year's McDonald's All-American Basketball Games and festivities will be held in Milwaukee, Wisconsin the week of March 24. The Slam Fest, which includes slam dunk, three-point shooting and other skills competitions, will be held at U.S. Cellular Arena on Monday, Mar. 24 at 5 p.m. PDT. The Slam Fest will be televised on ESPN2 on Tuesday, Mar. 25 at 8:30 p.m. PDT and re-broadcast on Saturday, April 5, at 11:30 a.m. PDT by ESPN.

Both the girl's and boy's basketball games will be on Wednesday, Mar. 26 at The Bradley Center. The girl's game will be broadcast live on ESPNU at 4 p.m. PDT followed by the boys at 6:30 p.m. PDT on ESPN.

Good luck to all the players in their quest for becoming a McDonald's All-American and in continuing their education at the collegiate level as a student athlete.

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