Local hoops star leads Cinderella team in NCAA tournament - CBS46 News

Local hoops star leads Cinderella team in NCAA tournament

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Bernard Thompson is on a magical ride. The former Rockdale County High School basketball star is the leading scorer for America's Cinderella team, Florida Gulf Coast University or FGCU.

"It's basically surreal, I guess," said Nastasha Hendrix.

Hendrix is Thompson's big sister and biggest fan. But even she didn't expect her brother to be playing so well so late into March.

"I expected him to go on and do great things, I didn't expect this so soon. It's shocking and surprising," said Hendrix.

Alan Williams is Thompson's high school coach. He is the man who helped nurture the talent who scored 23 points against the mighty Georgetown Hoyas and San Diego State in the NCAA tournament.

"When he was in high school, he kind of went to the basket a little more, was much more of a pull-up shooter. Now he can catch and shoot, he still has that pull-up, he can get all the way to the basket. I mean his game has just blossomed," said Williams.

Williams said Thompson is a star off the court as well.

"We were playing some school in DeKalb County his 11th-grade year and there was a special needs child who said 'I like those shoes.' Do you know after the game Bernard came back and gave them to him, and he had just pulled them out the box that game," said Williams.

Friday night at 10:07 p.m., Williams and Hendrix will be in Texas when the Eagles take on the Florida Gators.

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