MARTINSBURG, W.Va. -- Woodrow Wilson's Donte Nabors really couldn't help it.
He was born with a legacy tag, with a name that is basketball royalty in Beckley, a city where hoops is king.
His dad, Gene, was a star for Woodrow Wilson in the early 1990s and went on to play at LSU and Robert Morris. His uncles, Brian and Andre, were also stars for legendary coach Dave Barksdale.
So the expectations were there.
A year ago, Nabors started early in the season but was relegated to the junior varsity team when he struggled with his shot. What a difference a year has made.
Nabors became the first Woodrow player in more than 20 years to average 20 points (20.2) and was leader of the group that came up with the motto "Refuse to Lose,'' which Woodrow Wilson rode to 19 straight wins - after a 4-4 start - all the way to the state championship game, where the Flying Eagles lost to Martinsburg 57-52.
Nabors was the only underclassman on the Class AAA boys basketball all-state first team released Sunday by the West Virginia Sports Writers Association. It was quite a turnaround for the junior.
"I just got off to a really poor start last year, and that made me want to work even harder," Nabors said. "I wouldn't say there was any more pressure because of the name. To me, it's just my dad and my uncles. I know they were great players. I want to be better than they were."
Gene and Andre, both all-staters at Woodrow Wilson, are assistant coaches under Ron Kidd.
"He worked hard, and that was a credit to him," Gene Nabors said. "Being the dad, I kind of stepped away from it and let my brother [Andre] work with him. I am extremely proud of how hard he worked. He never complained, he never missed a workout. We told him this, 'When you aren't working, someone else is.'"
"Donte has the ability to be better than Gene, Brian or I were," Andre Nabors said. "In some ways, he is. His dad was a scorer and Donte can score. Brian was a great defensive player, and that is where he improved the most this season. I was probably somewhere in the middle. If he continues to work hard, he can be better than we were."
Donte Nabors knows what that means.
"They both have state championships," he said. "That is what I want. Honors are nice, but this is Beckley and we play for championships."