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Rancifer exceptional

Charles (Bobo) Rancifer of Brookhaven is an athlete for allseasons. The 6-foot-2, 200-pound senior is blessed with exceptionalspeed, strength and quickness.

On the basketball floor, he averaged 17.8 points, 6.1 rebounds,5.0 rebounds and 1.5 steals per game, leading the Panthers to theClass 4A state playoffs.

For his performance, Rancifer has been selected The DAILYLEADER’s Most Valuable Player and Mr. Basketball on the 2008All-Lincoln County Basketball Team. Joining him on the DL’s DreamTeam are Corey Dickerson and Blaine Roberts of Brookhaven Academy,Rickey Barnes and Ashton Fox of Loyd Star and Jeremy and Jamey Byrdof West Lincoln.

Rancifer has been a 3-year starter for BHS coach Ronald Hines.He said Rancifer’s basketball knowledge is exceptional.

“Charles is a very coachable kid,” said Hines. “He has a lot ofgame experience. He has a great basketball IQ. He understandsdbasketball terminology.”

A 3-year starter at quarterback on Ole Brook’s Division 6-4Achampionship team, Rancifer also received MVP honors in LincolnCounty on the DL’s 2007 Football Team. He was selected to play inthe Mississippi/Alabama All-Star Classic and returned a passintercpetion for a touchdown as a defensive back. He has signed afootball scholarship with Copiah-Lincoln Community College.

“Charles is extremely strong from being a football player,” saidHines. “He could be a D-I point guard like the guy at MississippiState. He has a strong upper body.”

Rancifer said he hopes to play football and basketball atCo-Lin. His favorite NBA player is Los Angeles Lakers superstarKobe Bryant. “I like the way he plays the game.”

A late arrival to the basketball team because of football,Rancifer was a key to Brookhaven’s limited success on the hardwood.In his team’s season-ending 58-56 loss at Northeast Lauderdale inthe South Mississippi 4A playoffs, Rancifer poured in 28 points.The Panthers finished 15-18.

He also excels in track. He runs a 4.56 in the 40-yard dash. Inthe weight room, he squats with 405 pounds and benches 260.

Corey Dickerson, a 6-2 senior, was a catalystin Brookhaven Academy’s march to a fourth consecutive MPSA Class AAState Tournaemnt championship. He averaged 14 points, 4 rebounds,3.5 steals and 2.4 assists per game for the Cougars.

“Corey is an athlete,” said BA coach Dale Watts. “He’sexceptionally fast, quick and strong. He’s God-gifted. He’s acompetitor and he hates to lose. That’s what sets him apart.”

Dickerson scored 28 points in the Cougars’ state championshipwin over Natchez Trinity Episcopal.

Rickey Barnes, a 6-5 senior center, averaged14.5 points and 8.5 rebounds per game for Loyd Star’s Hornets. Hehelped lead Coach Gene (Moochie) Britt’s team to a 20-7 record inthe Division 6-2A Tournament and a berth in the state playoffs.

“Rickey is a shot blocker and a good rebounder,” said CoachBritt. “He jumps really well and take the ball to the hole realstrong.”

Ashton Fox, a 6-foot junior guard, ran LoydStar’s offense. He averaged 14.6 points per game, plus 3assists.

“Ashton is a very good 3-point shooter,” said Coach Britt. “Hepenetrates well to the goal. He has good quickness and sees thecourt.”

Blaine Roberts, a 6-2 junior, averaged 16points. 3.3 rebounds, 2.1 assists and 1.5 steals per game for theCougars.

“Blaine was our best offensive player,” said Coach Watts. “Hewas in double figures almost every game. He spends a lot of extratime in the gym shooting.”

Jeremy Byrd, a 6-3 senior, averaged 11.9 pointsand 7.4 rebounds per game for West Lincoln’s Bears. He helped theBears (20-9) to a runners-up finish in the Division 8-1A Tournamentand a first-round state playoff win.

“Jeremy has been our most consistent player,” said West Lincolncoach Lane Young. “He’ll give you 10 points and eight or ninerebounds every game.

“He can jump really well and has blocked more shots than anybodyI’ve ever coached. He works hard to get better, too.”

Jamey Byrd, a 6-foot senior, averaged 10.1points and 4.3 rebounds per game for Coach Young’s squad.

“Jamey is full-speed the whole time,” said Young. “He will domore things to help you. He’s probably our best defensive playerbecause of his quickness.”