Gamecock Targets Featured in GSK Tourney

South Carolina recruited 2009 swingman Garrius Adams hard, but he eventually chose Miami. Gamecock commit Lakeem Jackson went head-to-head with Adams in the first round of the 37th annual Glaxo Welcome Holiday Invitational in Raleigh, and GamecockAnthem.com was there to catch the showdown. The tourney also featured other top prospects being recruited by the Gamecocks.

RALEIGH — Lakeem Jackson scored his first two points well into the first quarter, but boy were they emphatic. The "and 1" dunk sent the crowd berserk and was one of the highlights of the day as Christ School (N.C.) rolled past Middle Creek High (N.C.) 70-45 in its first-round game of the Glaxo Invitational on Saturday night.

Both Middle Creek and Christ School were in the Chick-Fil-A Classic last week, but the two schools didn't face off in Columbia. Middle Creek coach David Kushner watched Christ School beat highly regarded Ravenscroft by 31 points in Columbia and told the Raleigh News & Observer that he thought they might be the best high school team he'd ever seen. After watching the Greenies dismantle his team by 25 Saturday night, a score not indicative of how dominate Christ School was, he probably hasn't changed his mind.

The game featured the 2009 four-star South Carolina commit against Garrius Adams, another wing player that South Carolina pursued hard, but he chose to go a different route when he signed with Miami.

Adams finished with 16 points, but scored many of those late against Christ School's backups. Jackson held Adams in check in defending him head-to-head, limiting the talented guard to 7 of 22 from the field, including 0 for 8 from 3 point range. Adams was also harried into five turnovers by Jackson. "I didn't really shut him down, but I think I kind of frustrated him, because he got his shot off but he didn't really score many," Jackson said. "So I think I did my job with that."

Jackson was on pace for a triple-double at one point, but he was pulled for much of the third quarter because his team was up big. The 6-foot-5 wing ended up with 12 points, eight rebounds, three steals, two turnovers and five assists. He will have his hands full on defense again in guarding junior five-star recruit Reggie Bullock in the semifinals of the tournament. "My main object again will be to guard the other team's best player." Jackson said.

And if the Greenies are to defeat the NCHSAA Class 3-A State Champions, Kinston (N.C.), in the semifinals, then they'll advance to play Word of God, which features the best point guard in the nation in the 2009 class, John Wall, and five-star forward C.J. Leslie, who is a 2010 N.C. State commitment.

When asked if Jackson would take on the task of guarding Wall, Jackson simply replied, "I will." When asked of his thoughts of today as far as redemption goes with Adams, Jackson replied, "I did whatever I could to stop him, but I got the best of him today though."

The humble Jackson also spoke about trying to do a little recruiting with trying to get Adams to come to South Carolina with him. "I was trying him to come to South Carolina, but he didn't want to," he said. "But best of luck to him to wherever he goes."

Another player that the Gamecocks have offered is Melvin Tabb, of Enloe (N.C.). Tabb's team played in the other divisional bracket of the tournament, but the Eagles came out in the first quarter without their star junior forward in the lineup Friday.

Tabb was not injured, and he would come in and try to help knock off unbeaten Panther Creek (N.C.), but it wouldn't be enough as his lack of minutes and tenacity against the Catamounts limited him to four points in a 61-46 loss. But the 6-8 2010 recruit turned it up in the second game against Apex (N.C.) as he led his team with 14 points and six rebounds.

"It's just a policy we have at Enloe," Enloe coach Tommy Moore said. "If you miss practice, you don't start."

Moore admitted the four-star big man's absence was excused as he had a family vacation set up, but still chose to have him sit out the first quarter.

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