In an unprecedented season for Camden County basketball, not one, but both boys and girls basketball MVPs for the 46th annual McDonald’s All American Game went to Camden County students. DJ Wagner, who played his high school basketball at Camden High School and Hannah Hidalgo, who played her high school basketball at Paul VI, both secured the MVPs for high school basketball’s biggest game.
Camden County Commissioner Director Louis Cappelli Jr. called the historic achievement something everyone in the county should recognize.
“To think that two of the best basketball players in the nation, that both earned MVPs in the greatest basketball showcase on earth, went to high school about 10 minutes from one another in our county is something extraordinary,” Cappelli said. “These two players and their teammates embody the best of Camden County and we are proud to have DJ and Hannah representing us on and off the court. We are hoping for the best for them as they take their talents and academic pursuits to college.”
Both scholar-athletes had big games in Houston at the annual event to showcase the best basketball players in the nation at the end of March. In the boys game, Wagner lead the East to overcome a large second half deficit and defeat the West while scoring 19 points, all in the second half. In the girls game, Hidalgo broke the all-time scoring record and tied the steals record during her game.
Wagner will be attending the University of Kentucky in the fall and Hidalgo will be heading to Notre Dame. Wagner also became the first third generation player from the same family to play in the McDonald’s All American Game.
Started in 1977, the McDonald’s All American Game has become the biggest showcase in the nation for high school basketball players. It’s a place where most of the greatest athletes to ever play in the National Basketball Association and the Women’s National Basketball Association got their start. Since Magic Johnson won the first McDonald’s All American MVP this game has been a checkmark for some of basketball’s greatest players.
Both students will be awarded special Best in Class Medals for their performances on the hard wood in Houston.