Marc Payne’s High Country Hoops Camp came to an end on Thursday with several awards being handed out to the best young basketball athletes in the county.
Along with Coach Payne’s camp awards, the Ashe County Optimist Club handed out its annual Tri-Star Basketball Competition awards. A total of 34 campers participated in the competition that featured a dribbling contest, passing competition, and a shooting contest.
The Tri-Star event is one of several programs and community projects that the Ashe Optimist Club is a part of.
The eight and nine-year-old Tri-Star winner was Austin Taylor. Ryan Blevins finished in second place and Camdon Current took third.
In the 10 and 11-year-old age group, Luke Hudler captured first place, followed by Colby Greer in second and Alec Roland in third.
The final age group eligible to participate in the Tri-Star Competition were the 13 and 14-year-olds. Grant Thompson took the top spot with Malachi Poe in second and Calder Clay in third.
The Ashe Optimist Club meets at 6:30 p.m. on the first Thursday of each month at Smokey Mountain BBQ in West Jefferson. Club president Gwyn Campbell would like to thank all of the Tri-Star participants, as well as Coach Payne for allowing the Optimist Club to be part of the basketball camp.
Other awards were handed out to campers from Coach Payne and the rest of the camp staff.
The third grade Hot Shot and free throw shooting winner was Kaden Burgess. Tatum Brown was the winner of the Hot Shot and free throw shooting competition in the fourth grade division.
In the fifth grade division, Nate Lee was the Hot Shot and Layup competition winner, while Colby Greer won the free throw competition and the one-on-one tournament.
In the final group of awards for the morning session, Luke Hudler won the layup competition while Alec Roland swept the rest of the awards, winning the free throw, one-on-one, and Hot Shot competition. Roland was also named Most Outstanding Camper of the morning session.
The afternoon session featured middle school and high school players taking part in the camp.
Grant Thompson won the one-one-one tournament and the off-hand layup competition. David Roten took the top spot in the Hot Shot contest while Jordan Miller was the free throw shooting champion.
Four different campers took the top spot in the eighth grade division. Judd Price was the Hot Shot champion, Calder Clay was the free throw competition winner, Malachi Poe took first in the off-hand layup drill and Colin Ellis was the one-on-one champ.
In the ninth grade division, Kendall Wagoner was the winner of the Hot Shot and free throw competitions. Kendall Richardson won the one-on-one battle and Maison McNeill won the off-hand layup competition.
In the final age group, the high school sophomores had two winners in the four competitions. Alex Spencer took first in the Hot Shot, free throw, and off-hand layup competitions while Corbin Winebarger was the one-on-one champion. Spencer was also named Most Outstanding Camper of the afternoon session.