By Tom Hoggard | Outer Banks Voice on December 11, 2019
This coming weekend, high school and college basketball fans will be turning out to see some great young talent taking the court at First Flight High School.
The 2019 Good Guys Vs. Cancer showcase will tip-off its two-day event on Friday Dec. 13, and will feature local teams like the hosting Nighthawks, Manteo, Hatteras, Ocracoke, Pasquotank, Hertford County, and Camden, as well as other powerhouse programs from all over the state. In total, there will be 21 different schools traveling to Kill Devil Hills for the basketball showcase.
Pulling off such an event requires a commitment from numerous sponsors and volunteers. While there are certainly many people who have helped contribute to this event over the last two years, it’s safe to say that the showcase is the brainchild of First Flight Athletic Director and basketball coach Chad Williams. Yet while it may have been his idea, it was his father, Guy Williams Jr. who served as the inspiration for it all.
It began with the sad news of Guy Williams being diagnosed with cancer back in February 2018. Not too long after, First Flight was invited to participate in the annual Coaches Vs. Cancer event in Asheville. One of the requirements for teams to take part in that event is that they first hold a fundraiser of their own to go toward the cancer initiative. Coach Williams immediately knew what he would do to raise the necessary funds — hold his very own showcase here in Dare County.
With lots of work to be done, and no time to waste, the task may have seemed daunting to some. Williams however never doubted his ability to pull it off. It was through the work ethic he inherited from his father that it would all come together.
When asked about his father, Williams says that, “I never recall him taking a sick day growing up. Even after being diagnosed, he remained committed to his work instead of retiring.” And he always found a way to juggle his schedule to incorporate his son’s athletic events.
“Not only was he my little league coach,” Williams notes, “but he attended every single game that I played in my high school career, even those as many as three hours away.”
Guy Williams would eventually lose his battle with cancer, but not until the First Annual Good Guys vs Cancer Showcase had been played. Now the life and legacy of Guy Williams lives on, both with his son and with the showcase that he inspired.
This year’s 2nd Annual Good Guys vs Cancer Showcase promises to be an even bigger deal. Not only will area fans be showing up to help raise funds, but with the elite talent that will be featured, I’d venture to guess that you may even bump into a college scout or two.
Coach Williams has outdone himself this year by shooting for the stars, or at least the future stars. Take Raleigh’s Word of God, (alma mater of John Wall) which is ranked 42nd nationally and features two Division 1 talents, including the No. 7 prospect in the 2019 recruiting class, Isaiah Todd. Todd, who has already committed to Michigan, is joined on that team by PoBoigh King, member of the 2022 class who already has offers from Arizona State and Ole Miss.
Trinity Episcopal makes the trip from Virginia and brings with it a loaded roster led by the likes of Duke commit Henry Coleman. Then there’s 2021 NC State Wolfpack commit Terquavion Smith who will lead Farmville Central in their quest for a second consecutive 2A NC State Championship. Overall there will be more than 25 Division 1 talents, and countless other future college players on display.
Other programs hailing from North Carolina include Kinston High School, South Central, East Carteret, Pender and Washington County. Of course, the First Flight Nighthawks hope to make an impression on those in attendance as well. With Williams serving as the driving force, and his father Guy watching over it all from high above, this has the makings of a bigtime event in 2019 and for years to come.
General admission tickets, at $10 apiece, will go on sale the day of the event and will be sold on a first-come, first-served basis. Limited VIP reserved seating will be offered online, with sales starting November 15. Those tickets, at $40, will include free come-and-go access, reserved seating and concession tickets. Click here to order tickets.
Tom Hoggard is sports director/media consultant at East Carolina Radio. He hosts the Outer Banks Sports Report on 98.1 The Score Monday through Friday from 7 to 9 a.m.
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