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CVSS: Five years strong
Pitman’s Michael Anderson earned the Coach’s Choice award from the American team during the 2018 Central Valley Senior Showcase (Journal file photo).

For most basketball enthusiasts March is the time of year for madness amongst college teams, but for the Turlock Journal and many high school players in the area, the arrival of spring has gradually become associated with a different event — The Central Valley Senior Showcase.

With 46 All-Star players and four decorated coaches ready to hit the court, this year’s Showcase marks a leap forward in talent and competition. Formerly made up of seniors from 10 local schools, this year’s rosters were selected from 50 eligible schools across seven leagues — Central California Athletic League, Central California Conference, Western Athletic Conference, Valley Oak League, Trans Valley League, Central California Athletic Alliance and Southern Athletic League.

Leading the Girls American Team is John Williams of Turlock High. A longtime assistant to the Bulldogs’ boys varsity team, Williams took the helm of Turlock’s girls varsity team in 2019 and helped capture a CCAL title. He will be coaching against another league champion in Leonard Davis of Atwater High. Head coach of the Falcons since 2011, Davis helped his girls do something that hasn’t been done in Atwater in roughly 30 years — capture the CCC title.

Another CCC championship coach will also be on the court for the boys competition with Boys American Team coach Keith Hunter, a 24-year mainstay at Golden Valley High. Having just captured his seventh league title as a Cougar, Hunter also has 20 playoff appearances and a 1997 Sac-Joaquin Section championship to his name. The head coach of the Boys National Team, Travis Thomspon of Turlock Christian High, very nearly earned his school its first-ever SJS championship banner in 2019 in his first year at TC. Taking over a team that went 9-17 the year prior, Thompson and his Eagles finished this year with a record of 17-15 after losing to Vacaville Christian in the SJS Division 7 Championship game.

These are the coaches who will be leading the All-Leaguers, MVPs and champions who will be sharing the same court for a final sendoff in front of fans and supporters, for a night of fun and opportunity on Thursday. As for the players themselves, you can open up our special event tab and read biographies written by the competitors themselves.

The games will be played at the Turlock High School main gym on Thursday. The girls All-Star game starts at 5:30 p.m., with the boys at 7:30 p.m. There will performances by local singers and the Backstage Academy of Dance. The event also features a raffle and crowd shoot-out contest with a Nintendo Switch as the grand prize. The event is open to the public. Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for children 12 and under. Proceeds of the event go to scholarships for the athletes.

The Turlock Journal is happy to continue this tradition of showcasing local athletes while rewarding their hard work with scholarship awards and we hope to see you at the Fifth Annual Central Valley Senior Showcase!