Photo Courtesy of Gerry Wall
BANNER ELK, N.C. – The Lees-McRae College men's basketball team announced the additions of four transfers to its roster for the upcoming 2018-19 campaign on Friday afternoon. The newest Bobcats include: Deshawn Patterson (Lenoir, N.C.), Jerick Haynes (Shelby, N.C.), Wes Morgan (Charlotte, N.C.) and Mike Lee Jr. (Durham, N.C.). Collectively, these four student-athletes have one NCAA Division II Final Four appearance, three national tournament appearances on the junior college level, three high school state championship appearances and one high school state championship on their resumes.
"Last season was a memorable one with winning the conference tournament championship and having a program record of 23 wins," said LMC Head Coach Steve Hardin. "However, with losing 10 seniors we knew that this recruiting class would be extremely important for our continued success. We have a great mixture of transfers and freshman to fill out our roster and help us stay competitive for years to come. We are excited about this class and feel like we did a great job getting guys who want to be at Lees-McRae and will be great citizens in our community. For these four transfers our staff really targeted the whole state of North Carolina and guys that have been proven winners. We cannot wait to get these guys on campus!"
Deshawn Patterson – 6-0 Guard – Lenoir, N.C. (Lincoln Memorial University)
- A member of a team that was ranked No. 1 in the national Division II polls for several weeks over the past two seasons.
- Averaged 6.5 points and 1.9 assists per game as a Railsplitter. Shot 48.6 percent from the field and 45.5 percent from beyond the arc.
- As a prep star, Patterson averaged 31 points and seven assists in high school.
- East/West All-Star Game Most Valuable player
- Deshawn's father played at Lees-McRae.
- Intends to major in sports management at LMC.
Coach's Take – "We are blessed to add a proven winner in Deshawn," Hardin said of Patterson. "He is a prolific scorer, play maker and has won on the biggest stage of NCAA Division II basketball. We will look for Deshawn to become a leader and help our young players understand what it takes to be successful. I have known Deshawn for many years, as his Dad was standout player for the Bobcats. We expect Deshawn to come in with our current players and make an immediate impact."
Jerick Haynes – 6-1 Guard – Shelby, N.C. (Gardner-Webb/Cape Fear CC)
- All-time leading scorer at his high school with 1,990 points.
- Originally signed with Gardner-Webb before transferring and playing the last two seasons at Cape Fear Community College.
- Last year, Haynes averaged 8.4 points, 2.8 rebounds and 1.8 assists per game. He also played in all 33 games for the team.
- Helped lead his team to a 21-12 record and an appearance in the national junior college tournament.
Coach's Take - "We are excited to add another North Carolina kid in Jerick to our program," said Hardin of Haynes. "Jerick is a tough athletic guard from Cape Fear Community College (who originally signed with Division I Gardner-Webb) and brings a high flying attacking mentality to Dunk Mountain. Jerick is a great addition to our FIRE culture. Jerick's leadership is a going to have a huge impact on our program both in the classroom and on the court."
Wes Morgan – 6-6 Guard – Charlotte, N.C. (North Florida)
- Transfers to Lees-McRae after redshirting last season for North Florida.
- Graduated from Ardrey Kell High School in 2017.
- Integral part of the 2015 4A State Championship team, which won 27 straight games and was ranked as high as 32nd in the country that season.
- A two-time all-conference player
- Broke high school's record for made three-pointers in a game with nine and for a season with 79.
- Was leading scorer for the PSB Elite team that sent six players to Division I programs and two to Division II institutions.
- Proposed elementary education major at Lees-McRae.
Coach's Take – "Wes is a great addition to our program as he brings shooting and length to our roster," Hardin said. "Wes has all of the intangibles to be an elite shooter here at Lees-McRae. His basketball IQ and experience playing against elite teams, will help our team. He is a great kid that the community of Banner Elk is going to love and follow for the next four years!"
Mike Lee Jr. – 6-2 Guard – Durham, N.C. (Kansas City CC)
- Two-year starter at Kansas City Community College.
- Helped his team finished No. 12 nationally in his final season in Kansas City.
- As a prep, he was a three-time team MVP, led his team in assists all four seasons.
- Played for Garner Road AAU program on the Adidas Gauntlet.
Coach's Take – "We are really excited about Mike being a part of our Bobcat family," said Hardin. "Mike fits a need with his toughness, basketball IQ, ability to defend 94 feet and capability to knock down shots. In losing 10 seniors we needed to get guys who have experience and are proven winners. Mike is another great example of that."