Fil-Am hoops prodigy commits to top Texas college

By Steve Angeles, ABS-CBN North America News Bureau

Posted at Mar 25 2014 04:28 PM | Updated as of Mar 26 2014 02:22 AM

Filipino-American junior Sedrick Bihis Barefield (right) after receiving an award.

ONTARIO, California -- It's March Madness for high schoolers and it came down to the wire.

Despite a few mistakes near the end of the fourth quarter, Filipino-American high school junior Sedrick Bihis Barefield made a key pass and hit a big three-pointer in overtime to seal Centennial High School's first-ever California regional title, giving them their first trip to this week’s California State Basketball Championship game.

“It was one of my first times playing in a big arena so I kind of wasn't used to it and I think I settled down in the second half and started playing a little bit better… I just tried to focus what we had to do in overtime to win and we did that,” said Barefield.

The 6-foot-2 Barefield scored 21 points, racked up three steals and had five assists.

It's his big play ability that has caught the eye of some of the top basketball colleges since he was a freshman.

Last month despite only being a junior, Barefield verbally agreed to take a scholarship at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas, where he will play for legendary Coach Larry Brown.

Brown is the only basketball coach to win a college championship, an NBA title and an Olympic gold medal.

“Larry is just a great coach, hall of fame coach obviously coached some of the greatest players to ever play the game and I'm just be happy to be able to play for him in college. I think it's really going to help me and take my game to the next level,” said Barefield.

“I could not be happier with the staff and the school academically, the city of Dallas so we're super excited,” said Barefield’s mother, Kat.

Barefield has continued to improve his game. In the past year, he's grown an inch and appears to have added more muscle.

“I put on about 10 pounds, I grew a couple inches, I just been working a lot on my game, my ball handling, mainly my shot, trying to get a knock down jumper,” he said. “But it's tough in the season to be in the gym everyday and get in there along with practice.”

“It's really tiring but I tell myself I have to do it to be where I want to be. I think I'm evolving I'm not even close to being done yet,” he added.

But before he moves into his Texas dorm, Centennial High School will play for the state championship in Sacramento on Friday night (Saturday, Manila time).

With his college recruitment done early, Barefield can focus on finishing high college career with an even stronger senior year, hoping to make another run at a second state title game.