The Camden basketball team is scheduled to face off with the consensus No. 1 high school player in the nation on Saturday.
Camden (10-1), led by Kentucky recruit Lance Ware and freshman phenom D.J. Wagner, will play in the Hoophall Classic in Springfield, Mass., vs. Rancho Christian of Temecula, Calif., which features 7-foot Evan Mobley.
Rancho Christian (16-3) is No. 16 in the nation in the latest MaxPreps Xcellent 25 rankings.
Mobley, a University of Southern California recruit, is widely regarded as the top player in the country in the class of 2020.
Tipoff is scheduled for 4:30 p.m., and the game will be televised on ESPN3.
Etop Udo-Ema, Mobley’s coach with the Compton Magic AAU program, recently told ESPN’s theundefeated.com that Mobley is a “mixture of Giannis Antetokounmpo and Kevin Durant” and projects as the best high school player to emerge from California in the last 30 years.
Rancho Christian, which will play DeMatha Catholic (Md.) in the Hoophall Classic on Monday, has split two games this season with Los Angeles-area rival Sierra Canyon.
Sierra Canyon features senior Zaire Wade, son of former NBA star Dwyane Wade, and freshman LeBron James Jr.
Camden has dominated New Jersey competition, winning every game by 19 or more points. Camden’s lone loss was to Philadelphia Catholic League power Roman Catholic in a Dec. 30 game in which the Panthers held an 11-point lead in the third quarter.
The 6-9 Ware, who recently was nominated for the McDonald’s All-American Game that is scheduled for April 1 in Houston, has averaged 11.4 points and 6.2 rebounds for a balanced Camden team.
The 6-1 Wagner, the son of former Camden star Dajuan Wagner and grandson of former Camden star Milt Wagner, has scored in double figures in every game. D.J. Wagner is averaging 15.6 points and leads the team with 24 three-pointers.
Junior swingman Jerome Brewer averages 9.6 points, and junior forward TaQuan Woodley is averaging 6.5 points and 5.4 rebounds with a team-high 24 blocks for Camden.
Camden will play one game at the Hoophall Classic, an annual event in conjunction with the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame. Camden will face North Jersey non-public power Roselle Catholic next Thursday in a game that has been moved to Neumann University in Aston, Pa., with a scheduled 7 p.m. start.