Wayne Ellington's reign as MVP of the Eddie Griffin Challenge is over. Ellington and the Philadelphia all-stars were defeated in a come-from-behind win by Lance Thomas and the boys from Jersey 90-86.
Ellington, who had won the MVP in the sophomore and junior age divisions the past two previous events, watched as teammate Gerald Henderson played brilliantly in the Philly loss. Henderson scored 24 points, all of them impressive.
While Henderson took home MVP honors and was saddled with the loss, Lance Thomas, fresh off an official visit to Rutgers, went for 18 points and 5 rebounds for the winners. Thomas was the choice for Jersey MVP.
The win in the senior game marked the only defeat Jersey was able to muster against the City of Brotherly Love in three tries this year.
The contest appeared to be destined for a blowout early as Henderson and Co. raced out to a big lead. Despite the presence of potentially four McDonald's All-Americans on the floor, initially the game had more of a show time feel than a border war.
Henderson dominated early with blocks, dunks and pull-ups. However, in the second half Jersey rallied as Thomas got active. Per usual, the St. Benedict's star got himself to the line and made plays by being aggressive. Teammate Eugene Harvey was credited with 8 assists.
Earl Clark put together a strong stat line going for 9 points, 9 rebounds and 2 assists. Clark, who is hovering around the 6-foot-9 mark, is a potential serious match up problem for college wing players.
Philadelphia – Wayne Ellington 8, Gerald Henderson 24, Jason Love 4, Reggie Redding 7, Malik Alvin 8, Dan Geriot 7, Derrick Rivera 6, Earl Pettis 4, Darrin Govens 18.
NEW JERSEY – Keon Lawrence 6, Earl Clark 9, Luis Guzman 5, Eugene Harvey 12, Lance Thomas 18, Dan Werner 2, Kimmani Barrett 12, Desean Butler 11, Casiem Drummond 12, Yves Mbala 2.