At the conclusion of the 8th grade GMC post season tournament last week, the Lakota Plains Firebirds had secured back-to-back tournament wins as well as back-to-back undefeated seasons to finish at an impressive 36-0. According to Head Coach Mike Fortman, the team’s success can be attributed to “working incredibly hard, effort and intense practices. We’re really competitive in practice, and our second string players could start on any other team,” said Fortman.
Although the Firebirds are loaded with talent, they were led in scoring by 2 of the top 8th graders in the Ohio in Bryce Curry (14 ppg) and Xavier Ratica (15 ppg). The other starters included Ryland McQueen (10 ppg), Dawsen Tucker (7 ppg, 6 apg) and Demetrius Reece (7 ppg, 4 rpg, 4 apg).
According to Fortman, Curry is a surefire “DI prospect.” We’ve followed Curry and Ratica for several years on the AAU circuit and both players have performed at a high level on the national scene and should play college basketball at some level. Congratulations to Coach Fortman, the players and fans for what has been a truly remarkable 2-year-run!