KC Rivers At The NC AAU Tournament In Charlotte

The North Carolina AAU 17U State Tournament was played this past weekend (April 25-27) in the Charlotte area. Among the many talented players on hand was Kelvin (K.C.) Rivers of Independence High School in Charlotte. Rivers played with the Charlotte Royals alongside North Mecklenburg's Matt Salley and Central Cabarrus' Anthony Harris.

While only a sophomore at Independence, Rivers is a heady player with an excellent feel for the game. Playing an overwhelmed Lexington Devils team, his Royals team squashed the Devils with an early burst and finished with a 50-point margin of victory, nearing 100 points as a team. K.C. contributed nine points on 4-8 shooting, and two boards, three assists, one block and one steal. Rivers didn't try to carry his team, but he made smart decision after smart decision after smart decision. He already has the ability to handle the point guard spot, but can play the two as well. As one of the taller players on his team, he can also defend the post, as well as clamp down on perimeter scorers. He wasn't overly impressive in his first-round game, but he did display excellent decision-making and passing skills.

After Kappa Magic, featuring Wake Forest verbal Cameron Stanley, bounced Simmons and the Gaters Saturday afternoon, Rivers and his Royals teammates cleared out Carolina Crossover, setting up a Royals-Magic semifinal for Saturday evening. And it didn't disappoint.

While the Magic opened an early nine-point lead, Rivers and Anthony Harris hit back-to-back buckets to keep the score close, and it stayed close until the final horn sounded in double overtime. Rivers displayed his phenomenal court vision early on, garnering four assists in the first two periods, complimenting his 9 points and 5 rebounds. However, it was his second half performance, much of which he was being defended by Stanley, which left onlookers drooling. Rivers notched 19 second-half points (28 total – 10/17 from the floor), and finished with 11 rebounds, five assists, one block and one steal. Not only did he carry his team on his back for much of the second half, he put up points on repeated possessions as time was running down in the fourth quarter. From the baseline floater, to the turnaround jumper, to the pull-up jumper, to the tip-ins, he scored every way possible. However, a teammate missed four consecutive free throws in overtime, forcing a second extra period, which saw Ricky Hickman throw down an impressive jam that basically slit the Royals' throats. The Royals never recovered, and finally succumbed 98-93.

Rivers has a while before he'll make any decision, but one can assume his decision will come down to an impressive list that already features NC State, Duke and Wake Forest.

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