CONWAY, Ark. — Zac Pennington got a taste of what it might be like playing college basketball Saturday in the Arkansas High School Coaches Association All-Star Game at Central Arkansas University.
Pennington, who left Lake Hamilton High School as the school’s all-time leading scorer, including a record eleven 3-pointers in one game, is bound for Southern Arkansas University on Aug. 19. Saturday he played a role in the West stars upsetting the East, 68-66.
Pennington’s parents were All-Stars
The future Mulerider hopes to follow the footsteps of his parents (Scotty and Blair Pennington) in Magnolia. They also played in the All-Star Game, and for SAU in the late 1990s. Based on Zac’s performance against the East stars, who were bigger and arguably more athletic, he should live up to his schoolboy reputation.
“Zac is unbelievable,” said West coach Joe Brunson of County Line. “The things Zac can do with the ball — shooting, driving, passing, and playing defense. We tried to play everyone the first three quarters, but Zac was on the floor at the end.”
There were 13 lead changes in the contest, and it was Bentonville West standout Tucker Anderson contributing big offensively at the end. The 6-6 Anderson led both teams in scoring with 17 points en route to MVP honors. He also pulled down six rebounds, helping the West beat the taller East 50-47 on the boards.
Contributions came at right time
Pennington’s numbers were not eye-catching, but significant in the final half. He scored four points with a trey rallying his teammates. His two assists and two steals also came at key moments.
“I was just trying to have fun,” said Pennington. “I thought it would be more relaxed than it was, but these guys were serious. We thought they were the favorites going in, but we knew if we played hard we were good enough to beat them.”
Cutter-Morning Star graduate KJ McDaniel was the West’s third leading scorer with seven points. Pennington was on the floor 13:31, third most behind Bentonville West’s Dawson Price and Huntsville’s Mason Davidson (13:38).
The West outscored the East on turnovers, 17-8; in the paint, 30-24; second chance 11-9; and fast breaks, 17-13.