Three athletes that helped Northeast Mississippi Community College’s men’s basketball program maintain its national prominence over the last two years will represent the black-and-gold one last time.
Antares Gwyn, Felix Hayes and Denzel McDuffey were chosen to participate in the Mississippi Association of Community and Junior Colleges (MACJC) All-Star Game on Friday, April 12 at East Central Community College.
“It’s going to be fun to watch them play,” said Tigers head coach Cord Wright. “They’re excited about it. They just need to do the things you’re supposed to and obviously have a lot of fun with it and stay in the moment.”
Gwyn was Northeast’s leading rebounder for two consecutive seasons. He fell just short of recording 500 boards for his career after totaling 465 in 52 appearances for an average of 8.9 per game.
He was the individual state champion in rebounding during the 2017-18 campaign with 255 boards. Gwyn set a career-high three times that year with 16 rebounds in contests against Lawson State (Ala.) Community College, Southern (La.) University at Shreveport and Tennessee Preparatory Academy.
The 6-3, 185-pound forward pieced together eight double-doubles during his two-year tenure in the City of Hospitality. He had three such performances this season, including a 12-point and 10-assist effort in a win over Mississippi Delta Community College.
The Corinth High School graduate was an efficient shooter with a 46.3 percent clip overall and a 73.3 percent showing at the free throw line. Gwyn had a season-best 14 points at Mississippi Delta in February.
Hayes became the Tigers’ top three-point shooter during his final campaign on the Booneville campus at 41.8 percent. He was one of three double-digit scorers for Northeast this year with 11.4 points per contest.
The Baldwyn native was recognized as the MACJC Player of the Week after averaging a double-double of 24 points and 11.5 rebounds in big triumphs by the Tigers over Holmes Community College and Mississippi Delta.
Hayes compiled three 30-plus point performances as a sophomore. He set a career-high of 33 points on 8-of-12 shooting from beyond the arc in a road win over Northwest Mississippi Community College in January.
The 6-2, 190-pound guard helped Northeast reach the semifinals of the MACJC State Tournament for the third season in a row by scoring a game-best 31 points in an opening round victory versus Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College.
McDuffey was the Tigers’ leading scorer in back-to-back campaigns. The last Northeast standout to accomplish that feat was former National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) All-American Dimario Jackson from 2013-15.
The Clinton High School alumnus posted 14.4 points per contest while shooting an effective 53.2 percent from the floor. McDuffey also averaged 6.2 rebounds, 2.4 assists and 1.2 steals as well.
The 6-2, 185-pound guard poured in a career-best 34 points on the strength of 13 made field goals during Northeast’s pre-Christmas break triumph at Wallace State (Ala.) Community College at Hanceville.
He was a MACJC All-State selection and a two-time MACJC Player of the Week winner during his freshman season. McDuffey accumulated six career double-doubles, including a 29-point and 15-rebound outing this year against Lawson State.
The MACJC All-Star Game begins at 5 p.m. with women’s action first. The men’s matchup immediately follows the opener at approximately 7 p.m. inside the Brackeen-Wood Physical Education Building in Decatur.
CUTLINE – Head shots of Antares Gwyn, Felix Hayes and Denzel McDuffey, who will represent Northeast Mississippi Community College in the 2019 Mississippi Association of Community and Junior Colleges (MACJC) All-Star Game on Friday, April 12 at East Central Community College.