McDonald’s All-American game: one player’s perspective

Reshanda Gray of Washington Prep High School in Los Angeles was one of the players for the West in yesterday’s McDonald’s All-American high school game. The event capped off a big year for the Cal signee, who won a gold medal last June playing for USA Basketball’s U17 team.

“Too Tall” had reported having a lot of fun in the days leading up to the game, so I talked with her about her experience after she returned today.

SF: What activities did you participate in for the four days leading up to the game?

RG: We went to Ronald McDonald House the first day and spent time with the kids. They ranged in age from 1-10, and we did arts and crafts with them, played video games and decorated sugar cookies. We also autographed balls for them. It was a lot of fun.

On Monday we had the Jamfest. Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis (Mater Dei) won the three-point shooting contest. Ariya Crook-Williams (Long Beach Poly) won the skills challenge, which was a sequence of dribble patterns, layups and different types of passes.

SF: What was it like playing in the game, in front of 19,000 people?

RG: I’d never played in front of that many people before, and at first I was a little nervous. But then I just went out there and did what I could do.

SF: I can’t find a box score – how did you do?

RG: Five points, seven rebounds and three blocks.

SF: Were the East and West teams separated, or were you together?

RG: We hung out with each other outside of practices. They assigned roommates from the same team, so all the West players roomed together.

SF: Whom did you share a room with?

RG: (UCLA signee) Justine Hartman. We kinda bonded.

SF: How many practices did you have leading up to the game?

RG: Just one a day, not two.

SF: What celebrities did you get to meet?

RG: Alonzo Mourning, Larry Bird and Doc Rivers.

SF: What was the best part of the experience for you?

RG: The whole trip was a great experience for me. I got to meet other players from the East coast, I got to do something I loved, and we helped kids. We did it all.

Reshanda Gray and former Miami Heat player Alonzo Mourning.

ESPN’s game story.

Hoopfeed story.