In his last game before becoming a Razorback, Anton Beard helped North Little Rock win its second straight 7A state championship.
The No. 25 point guard in the country and Arkansas signee scored 29 points while the Charging Wildcats beat Springdale 89-81 in Hot Springs Thursday night. He also had two assists and two steals.
"It feels good to win your last year and go out with a bang," Beard said.
All season, Beard had to deal with the pressure of not only being the defending state champion, but also the pressure that comes with being a highly recruited prospect.
His teammates helped alleviate some of that pressure. KeVaughn Allen, a four-star shooting guard for the class of 2015, scored 28 points in the championship game. He already has several offers, including from Arkansas, Baylor, UConn, Memphis and Mississippi State.
Another class of 2015 prospect, K.J. Hill, scored 12 points for North Little Rock. Hill is a three-star wide receiver in football and has offers from six SEC schools, including Arkansas, Alabama and Georgia.
"It's a great feeling leaving them on a good note," Beard said.
Beard is the second player from the Little Rock area to sign with the Razorbacks since 2013, joining Little Rock Hall's Bobby Portis, who has started all 32 games for Arkansas as a freshman.
Portis came to Arkansas after winning four straight state championships at Little Rock Hall. Beard will come in with two straight, as he won a 6A title at Little Rock Parkview last season.
"I'm going into [Fayetteville] with a championship on my mind," Beard said. "Hopefully I'll go in there and help them win one."
Beard wasn't the only 2014 Arkansas signee to win a state title in Hot Springs last week. Trey Thompson, the No. 26 center in his class, helped lead Forrest City to a 69-60 win over Jacksonville in the 5A state championship.
Thompson scored 10 points and had nine rebounds and four blocks against Jacksonville. He and Beard averaged 17.3 and 24.7 points during the playoffs, respectively, and were named the MVP of their championship games.
Beard Leads North Little Rock to 7A Title
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