Boys Basketball

EJ Liddell chosen to compete in Allen Iverson Roundball Classic

The reigning Illinois’ Mr Basketball and Gatorade Illinois Player of the Year, Belleville West senior EJ Liddell, has been selected to compete in one of the premier high school events in the nation.

Liddell will join future Ohio State University teammate DJ Carton and 22 others at the third annual Allen Iverson Roundball Classic.

The event will be held April 24-26 with the game, matching Team Honor and Team Loyalty, set for April 26. The venue and location will be released in the upcoming weeks. Iverson, a 15-year NBA veteran, 11-time all-star and 2001 NBA Most Valuable Player, released the 24-player roster on Thursday.

Carton, a Bettendorf, Iowa native, is ranked as the No. 4 point guard and 28th best player in the nation n the nation in the 2019 class according to the 247Sports Composite. The 6-7 Liddell is ranked as the No. 8 small forward and 45th best player in the Class of 2019, according to the 247Sports Composite. Carton and Liddell will be teammates on the 12-man Team Honor squad.

A two-time first team all-state selection, Liddell was one of the leaders on a Belleville West team which won the Class 4A state championship last March. This season, Liddell is averaging 20.2 points, 9.1 rebounds, 3.2 assists and nearly four blocked shots per game. The Maroons are ranked second in the Illinois Class 4A state poll and carried a 26-4 record into its regular season finale on Friday with Granite City.

The 2019 Allen Iverson Classic begins on April 24 with the Iverson Games, which include dunk contest, 3-point shootouts and 1-on-1 contests.

Dean Criddle has worked at the Belleville News-Democrat for 32 years as a sports writer. Dean graduated from SIUE with a double major in journalism and English, is married and lives in Belleville.