Hollingsworth invited to Derby Festival Classic in April

BOWLING GREEN, Ky. — The honors kept coming this week for WKU signee guard Taveion Hollingsworth, who was selected Thursday to play in the Derby Festival Basketball Classic in April.

Hollingsworth will be among the top talent competing in the all-star game, which takes place April 15 at Freedom Hall in Louisville.

Paul Laurence Dunbar senior Taveion Hollingsworth, pictured against Bowling Green, is 2017 Kentucky Mr. Basketball. He has signed to play college basketball at Western Kentucky University. (Courtesy of Steve Roberts / WKU Athletics)

The event, which was first held in 1973, is billed as the oldest high school all-star game in the nation. It’s featured numerous standout players over the years, including Jamal Mashburn, Moses Malone, Rex Chapman, Pervis Ellison, Isiah Thomas, Dominique Wilkins, Darrell Griffith, Derek Anderson, Anfernee Hardaway and Michael Beasley.

Hollingsworth, a 6-foot-2 guard out of Paul Laurence Dunbar High School in Lexington, is the first WKU signee to compete in the game since George Fant and Derrick Gordon in 2011.

On Tuesday, Hollingsworth was named 2017 Kentucky Mr. Basketball, the award given to the state’s top senior. He’s the sixth Kentucky Mr. Basketball in WKU history and the first since Elizabethtown’s Steffphon Pettigrew in 2007.

Because of the Mr. Basketball honor, Hollingsworth is slated to wear the customary No. 1 jersey for the Kentucky squad in the annual Kentucky-Indiana All-Star series in June. He has also been selected to play in the Ohio-Kentucky All-Star Game in April.

Hollingsworth, a consensus three-star guard who signed with WKU in November, led Dunbar to a 21-9 record this year as a senior, averaging 28.3 points and 6.8 rebounds per game. He shot 55.1 percent from the field and 75.9 percent from the free-throw line.

Hollingsworth finished his career as the all-time leading scorer in Lexington boys’ basketball history with 2,495 career points. Before being named Mr. Basketball, he was selected as the 11th Region Player of the Year.

How to follow the Hilltoppers: For complete information on WKU Hilltopper Basketball, follow the team’s social media channels, @WKUBasketball on Twitter, @WKUBasketball on Instagram, and WKU Basketball on Facebook

One Comment


    June 12, 2017 at 9:42 am

    UK basketball signee Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and UK recruiting target Mark Smith played in the Derby Festival Classic in Louisville on Saturday night.

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