Representing Valley at the All-Star Game
Published 10:30 am Wednesday, July 12, 2023
Two Valley basketball stars, Cam Dooley and Brandon Thomas, will be showcasing their talents next Tuesday at the North vs South All-Star Game.
The two upcoming seniors were picked for this game after stellar junior seasons where they led Valley to an undefeated season and a state championship.
Out of the 15 players selected for the South team, only five of the players were from 5A schools.
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The Valley connection should be evident. Thomas and Dooley are close friends and the two have played basketball together for most of their lives.
“I’m excited,” Thomas said. “We’ve been playing with each other for so long. Our chemistry is, like, so good.”
Thomas expects there to be “a lot” of fireworks between him and Dooley during the game on Tuesday.
Thomas also has familiarity with some of his other teammates in the all-star game from playing with them during AAU.
There were several players on the North squad that Thomas is excited to face next Tuesday. Thomas is excited to face some of the top guards in the state in Ty Davis, Adrian Wooley and Caleb White.
At his position, Thomas was excited for the opportunity to play Chase McCarty. McCarty is currently rated as the top player in the state of Alabama for the class of 2024. However, it is unlikely that he will play in the all-star game because he is transferring to play at IMG Academy next season.
There should be several college scouts and coaches at the all-star game. Thomas wants to use this opportunity to show people why they should be paying attention to basketball in Valley and in Alabama.
“I want to have fun, but I want to show that I belong there and that Valley is really slept on, and Alabama in general is slept on in basketball,” Thomas said.
For Valley’s basketball team, Thomas is considered as a big time finisher at the rim. Thomas wants to showcase his finishing ability as well as his ability as a shooter on Tuesday.
Thomas feels like his basketball IQ and his skills as a passer are often overlooked, and he hopes to also show off those skills.
Even though it’s an all-star game, Thomas is still too competitive to expect anything less than a win for the South squad.
“We’re gonna win,” Thomas said. “We’re gonna try our best to win. I don’t like losing even if it’s an all-star game. I’m very competitive. I know it’s an all-star game, but I still don’t want to lose.”
Thomas has competed on big stages before with Valley as well as with his AAU team, but he knows that this game is still a huge opportunity to impress college coaches.
With several of the top recruits in the state of Alabama playing in the game, several coaches will be in attendance to see specific players. Thomas feels like he can steal the show if he just sticks to playing his game.
“I just got to do my part, playing how I’ve been playing my whole high school career,” Thomas said. “I’ve been working on my game. I’m going to showcase that.”
As it is with most all-star games, Thomas does not expect the game to start out as intense as a game during the regular season. As the clock winds down, Thomas expects the players on both teams to play harder.
“I’d say about the first two quarters, first three quarters, are going to be like everybody’s just playing around,” Thomas said. “Then, when we get to the fourth quarter, everybody’s just going to play for real.”