EASLEY — It’s hard enough preparing for one sharp-shooting guard with an extremely high basketball IQ. It’s nearly impossible to prepare for two.
Easley High twins Alex and Matt Preston have made a name for themselves sporting Green Wave jerseys on the hardwood, but it is their constant improvement that has their coach raving.
“They have really developed,” Easley Coach Grant Stallard said. “They played for me on varsity, as sophomores, in a spot-up shooter kind of role. They have really developed into great all-around guards.”
Stallard says the two have an uncanny ability to find each other on the court.
“They always know where the other one is on the court,” Stallard said. “I have a twin brother myself and we played a lot of sports together. It is twin magic sometimes. They will throw a pass, and I will be wondering how in the world they knew their brother was right there.”
The two’s shooting ability keeps Stallard’s team in any game they play, according to the head coach.
“If we’re having a bad night, we’re never out of a game with them in the game because of their shot from the outside,” Stallard said. “At any point they could get hot, stay hot and get us back in a game. That also works with extending leads.”
Easley already presents a tough threat with Troy McGowens running the point, but Stallard says the Preston twin’s combination is too much for some teams.
“With Troy (McGowens) pushing the ball and (the twins) spotting up, it is kind of a deadly combination,” Stallard said. “They really have worked and by no means are they just shooters now.”
The twins are not all offense, however.
“They play great defense,” Stallard said. “What they lack in athletic ability, they make up for in basketball knowledge. I would call them ‘basketball players’ before I would call them ‘athletes,’ but their angles on defense are great and they work well together.”
Stallard says it is rare that both of them will have a bad game.
“We’ve had teams that will try to totally take them out of the game,” Stallard said. “It is very hard, though. It’s difficult to prepare for one great shooter, but when you have two it’s even harder. It’s very rare that both of them will be off in the same game.
“I would hate to prepare for these two knowing that they have quick releases and are so talented,” he said.
There are even games during the year where Stallard cannot believe what he is seeing.
“There are special games throughout the year where both of them will be unconscious,” Stallard said. “Last year at Byrnes we had about 16 or 17 three-pointers. That kind of stuff makes me look like I know what I’m doing.”