Mackin didn't come close to challenging either Gonzaga or DeMatha for the Metro Confernce basketball championship, but Trojans Coach Butch McAdams was extremely proud of senior Henri Abrams.
The 6-foot-10, 185-pound Abrams, who was cut from the team the previous two years, worked diligently with Mc-Adams and improved enough to gain the eye of several college coaches. Abrams, who averaged five points, seven rebounds and four blocked shots this season, is close to signing with George Mason.
"Henri was a major project. He had no confidence at all when I arrived here (1984)," McAdams said. "He was about 6-6, but he hadn't played much at all. We worked with him at camps and during the year and he eventually started for the junior varsity as a junior. He had a three-point play to help the jayvee beat DeMatha for the first time in about 10 years.
"He started for us this year, and each time Henri contributed, his confidence grew. He became more relaxed on the court and began to learn the game."
Gonzaga's Mark Tillmon, the metropolitan area's player of the year, will lead a talented Capital All-Star team against a taller U.S. All-Star team in the 13th annual Capital Classic April 5 at Cole Field House.
Joining Tillmon will be Hammond's 6-foot-5 Quinton Burton, Coolidge's 5-9 Derrick Davis, Flint Hill's 6-0 Brian Domalik and 6-10 Sam Jefferson, DeMatha's 6-6 Steve Hood, Anacostia's 6-0 Mark Jackson, Bethesda-Chevy Chase's 6-7 Mark Karver, Bishop Ireton's 6-9 Bob Pollard, Crossland's 6-4 Mike Sumner and Eleanor Roosevelt's 6-7 John Turner. Also playing for the Capital All-Stars will be 6-9 J.R. Reid, an at-large selection from Kempsville High School in Virginia Beach.
Flint Hill's Stu Vetter will coach the local team..
Finishing fourth in one of the world's most prestigious water skiing events and 13th in another would be a thrill for most, but Russell Gay returned from Melbourne, Australia, two weeks ago disappointed with those placings.
Gay's willingness to settle for nothing less than the top may some day catapult the Stafford High junior to the world championship of trick water skiing. For now, he will have to be content with the junior national title he won last summer, and the fourth- and 13th-place finishes in the junior and senior Moomba Masters.
"I was hoping to do better in Australia. I expected to win the juniors and place better in the seniors, which has the world's 20 best skiers," said Gay, who runs cross country for Stafford in the fall and pole vaults for the track team in the spring. "I fell once in both the junior and masters. It the competition was held on a river, and I had never skied on a river before.