Razorback Flavor

With many of their future University of Arkansas teammates looking on, Razorback basketball signees Michael Sanchez, Nate Rakestraw and Marcus Britt all flourish during Thursday night's AHSCA Basketball All-Star Game.

FAYETTEVILLE — Twice during the fifth quarter of Thursday's Arkansas High School Coaches Association All-Star boys basketball game, Patrick Beverley couldn't stay in his seat.

The Arkansas guard couldn't even stay in the Bud Walton Arena stands as he watched two future teammates fuel the West team's comeback and eventual 92-82 victory.

He sprinted down to the court first after a spin-move, drop-step and vicious two-handed dunk while being fouled by Springdale Har-Ber graduate Michael Sanchez.

He returned to the court, this time to the West huddle, after Sanchez's high school teammate, Nate Rakestraw, stole a pass, dribbled behind his back and stuck a pull-up 3-pointer.

"That's my Arkansas family right there," Beverley said after the game. "I've got to go support them."

Rakestraw and Sanchez, two-thirds of the future Arkansas family playing Thursday, teamed up with Oklahoma State recruit James Anderson to execute a highlight-reel fifth quarter.

The West's 29-12 final-quarter performance was enough to rally back from a seven-point deficit to start the last quarter. The third member of the Razorbacks' incoming class, Forrest City's Marcus Britt, helped the East build a lead as high as 13 points in the second quarter. But the West, behind its Division I trio, took over in the final eight minutes.

"We kind of knew in the fifth quarter that we were going to take it to them," said Rakestraw, a 6-5 guard.

That was evident immediately as Anderson, a 6-foot-7 Junction City graduate and the game's MVP, followed a Rakestraw 3-pointer with an unfathomable sequence.

First, he snagged a rebound and somehow sprinted up-court and between three defenders with a behind-the-back dribble. Anderson then threaded a no-look pass to Sanchez for a dunk. The play cut the East's lead to two points and drew a loud "ooh" from spectators.

The West then took a lead it wouldn't relinquish on Sanchez's three-point play, which induced Beverley to semi-storm the court.

By the end of the quarter, Sanchez had scored 12 points, Anderson had scored six points and dished out four assists and Rakestraw had drilled two key 3-pointers.

Sanchez, a 6-8 forward, had a simple explanation for the fifth-quarter explosion.

"The West and the East, it's just like defending territory," Sanchez said. "This whole week, we bonded and it showed in the fifth quarter. I feel like the whole week, all we wanted to accomplish tonight was getting a 'W.'"

In reality, the East maybe should've realized what they were in for early in the game.

Five seconds into the game, Anderson leapt high into the air and threw down an alley-oop dunk from Stephen Blake.

"It was just the play we had drawn up," Anderson said.

Nate Rakestraw

Marcus Britt

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