Tyreke Evans played the role of spoiler on Saturday in a big win against a local power at the Atlanta Prime Time Shootout. Lately, the five-star junior guard is playing another role for his American Christian (Pa.) team.
Evans scored 22 points on six of 14 shooting from the field and a perfect eight for eight from the foul line en route to a 79-71 win against Wheeler (Ga.) High School. Evans added seven rebounds and seven assists in the victory.
"We are trying to win every game. Every game is big for us," Evans said. "Coach did a good job of getting us prepared. It was a team effort."
The win against Wheeler, a one-time top 25 nationally ranked program this year, is the first of many for Evans and his teammates. With games against St. Benedict's, St. Patrick and Oak Hill Academy still on the schedule, Evans is hoping for the same results he had against Wheeler and South Kent.
"Our team is figuring out our role and I think everyone is doing that," Evans said.
Point guard is the role Evans is playing this year. Against Wheeler, the five-star guard looked comfortable directing the offense and had little problem feeding the right players at the right times.
"I'm doing good this year. I feel like I'm being a better leader and running the point. I'm doing my best of running team and playing that role," Evans said.
"I'm trying to get into that rhythm that a point guard needs in order to win games. I know for myself that I can score any time that I want so I'm trying to get my teammates involved and in a position to win basketball games. You can't win without your team."
The elite level teams know that as well as anyone at the next level and Evans is a top target for programs that constantly find themselves in the top 25 year in and year out. Often one to deflect any kind of recruiting conversations, Evans said after a long pause, that he is taking his time with figuring out where he wants to go after high school.
"I just want to make sure it's the right decision for me," Evans said. "Where am I going to get my playing time? Where can I find a great coach? Where am I going to fit in?"
Has he found that yet?
"No, not that I know of," Evans said.
"That's all going to come on taking visits and checking the schools out. I've already been to Louisville and it was real nice up there. Same for North Carolina. I was there for a game," Evans said.
Connecticut and Villanova are also being considered by the No. 4 overall player in the class of 2008. Just who is recruiting him the hardest?
"Whew, a lot of them. Schools are coming at me," Evans said.
Needless to say, he's playing it close to the vest or just not ready to take his recruitment to the next level. He does know when he wants to find a home though.
"I'm probably going to make my decision at the end of the summer," Evans said.