A pair of Owen basketball players will take the court for the final games of their respective careers when the region’s best players meet in Cherokee on Saturday, March 23.
Seniors Chesney Gardner and Noah Moore, seniors who each capped their final seasons with their teams by reaching career milestones, were named to the Blue-White All-Star teams.
The annual showcase benefits the Rhododendron Civitan Club’s Special Needs programs. This year’s game will be the 67th for the boys and the 43rd for the girls.
The rosters for this year’s Blue-White All-Star game, which begins with the girls game at 6 p.m., were released on March 11.
Moore was named to the Blue Team, which will be coached by Mountain Heritage head coach Hank Newsome. The White Team will be led by Pisgah’s Casey Kruk.
Gardner will also wear blue, suiting up for the girls Blue Team, which is being led by Reynolds head coach Amanda Whitaker. Brevard’s Chad Owenby will coach the girls White Team.
The Warlassies finished 5-20 this year but Gardner posted the best statistical season of her four-year career on the varsity squad. She averaged 26.4 points and 10.1 rebounds per game and finished among the top scorers in the region.
She finished her career with just under 2,000 points and pulled down her 1,000th rebound during her final game in an Owen uniform.
She eclipsed the 30-point mark in seven games for the Warlassies last season, including a showing against West Henderson in which she scored a career-high 38 points and pulled down 21 rebounds.
Gardner, who signed to play college basketball for University of South Carolina Aiken, will be one of six players from the Western Highlands Conference to take the court for the Blue Team. Her former teammate, and current Montreat College guard Kendal Marlowe, represented Owen on the team last year.
Moore was also a prolific scorer for Owen last season, as he led the Warhorses with 19.9 points per game. He opened his senior season with a career-high 38 points against Roberson and scored his 1,000th career point on the final field goal of his career.
"It is a well deserved way to end is high school career, playing with the best players in WNC," said Warhorses head coach Clint McElrath of Moore's all-star selection. "Noah has been a leader both on and off the court for our program the past two years and his presence is definitely going to be missed."
Moore knocked down 72 three-pointers as a senior, when he scored 498 and his 1,000 points. His former teammate D.J. Garnett represented Owen in the game in 2018. Former Warhorse standout and another former teammate of Moore's, Brian Bartlett, was the MVP of the contest in 2017.