The 2016 Dick’s Sporting Goods High School Nationals is closing out the 2015-16 high school basketball season with a bang. Eight of the top ranked high school boys teams across the nation venture to New York with a chance to be crowned as the best of the best.
La Lumiere (60) vs. St. Benedict’s(59):
La Lumiere came out very strong to start the day, and the first game of the Dicks High School Nationals Tournament. They were playing with sense of urgency. They were dominant on the inside, blocking shots, finishing at the rim. They struggled with the ball in the second quartering, turning it over multiple times. Brian Bowen really came to play right from the start. He would drive hard to rim, shoot the 2 or 3. He finished with 23 points, 5 rebounds, and 2 assists. The Texas commit James Banks was active defense, having the game winning block, and was active on the glass pulling down 8 rebounds, and adding 4 points. The DePaul commit Brandon Cyrus had 6 points, 4 rebounds. Other notable players were Junior Jeremiah Tilmon who was just short of a double-double having 10 rebounds, and 9 rebounds, and Freshman Tyger Campbell, a small, shifty point guard who had 9 points.
St. Benedict’s started the game off looking a little blown away by the speed and aggressiveness of La Lumiere. They were turning the ball over numerous times during the first quarter, allowing La Lumiere, and Brian Bowen especially to get the easy baskets. St. Benedict’s made an incredible effort to always try to crawl their way into the lead, but La Lumiere would always have an answer for them. Junior David Beatty who is said to be their best player went 1 for 12 from the floor today, and 1 for 7 from 3-point range. James Scott, who’s headed to Kennesaw State had 18 points, 4 rebounds, 4 assists. Bourama Sidibe added a double-double with 12 rebounds, 13 points, 2 assists, and George Washington commit Arnaldo Toro had 10 points, 8 rebounds.
Oak Hill Academy (81) vs. Wasatch Academy (64):
Oak Hill was down 0-10 to start this game. They hadn’t had a practice for 17 days, and hadn’t had a game for almost a month. To say the least, they looked rusty. They didn’t find their rhythm until the end of the second quarter. They ultimately come out on top once they started getting good looks from 3-point range and the guards were getting much more aggressive, driving to the basket. Junior guards Matt Coleman, Lindell Wigginton, Devontae Schuler, and Creighton commit Ty-Shon Alexander put on a show. Coleman had 7 points, 2 rebounds, 4 assists, Wigginton had 17 points, 4 rebounds, 6 assists, Schuler had 13 points, 3 assists, and Alexander had 11 points, 1 assist. This is not to say that the forwards presence wasn’t felt. Virginia Tech commit Khadim Sy was ruthless on the glass, adding a double-double of 10 rebounds, 13 points. Alabama commit Braxton Key was doing it all adding in 12 points, 7 rebound, 4 steals, 3 assists, and 2 blocks.
Wasatch Academy came out hot, getting good 3’s and 2’s to hit. They couldn’t withhold the combination of the big forwards, and the shifty guards from Oak Hill however. They put up a tremendous fight, their passing was unreal. Josip Vrankic had the game high 18 points, 6 rebounds, 2 assists. Jeff Baradziej was looking good from the 3, having 9 points, 3 rebounds, 2 assists. Utah State commit Koby McEwan had 12 points, 6 rebounds, 5 assists. Watch out for Wasatch Academy in the future as they may make a name for themselves as one of the best basketball teams from the West.
Montverde Academy (70) vs. Providence Day (54):
Montverde came out colder than ever. They were down 12-15 after the first quarter. Once they started to have a strong full court press however, they started causing turnovers and their big were having a field day. With the huge group of forwards that include Bruno Fernando, Silvio De Sousa, Simi Shittu, and Micah Potter. Fernando had 8 points, 5 rebounds, 2 assists, De Sousa had 10 points, Shittu had 8 points, 5 rebounds, and Potter added 3 points, 2 rebounds. The guards were also impressive, although Montverde may not be known for them just yet. Freshman point guard RJ Barrett had a game high 20 points, 7 rebounds, 2 assists, clearly making a statement and a name for himself. He is definitely a guy to keep track of in the years to come. Devonta Jordan also had a good game, he was quick to the basket, and is a good transition player, therefor he added 11 points, 3 rebounds, 3 assists, and 3 steals.
Providence Day saw glimpses of a chance to make a run against Montverde but could not capitalize. They were hot from beyond the arc however. Tennessee commit Grant Buchmiller only played 1 minute of the game, which could play a factor in this loss. Sophomore starting point guard Devon Dotson is a name you’ll hear a lot in the future, he recently received another from UNC, and he had 11 points, 3 rebounds, 5 assists. Other notable players were Grant Williams who had 12 points, 8 rebounds, and Isaac Johnson who added 8 points, 6 rebounds.
Miller Grove (67) vs. Findlay Prep (65):
Miller Grove just won a state championship in Georgia, defeating High Point Christian who’s known for Kentucky commit Bam Adibayo and Boston College commit Ty Graves. There may be only one guy from Miller Grove who anyone has heard of, Alterique Gilbert, the McDonald’s All-American and UConn commit. He has at the McDonald’s game just last night, getting on a plane in Chicago at 5:30 AM, and arriving in New York at 11 AM. For most people this would mean it would be a sluggish day. For Alterique Gilbert it meant he would have 2o points, 4 assists, 2 rebounds, 2 steals. This by no means is to say that this game was a blow-out. The game remained neck and neck until the very last second. Miller Grove does have a rather small roster, having their tallest player stand at 6’7”. They are incredible shooters however. Raylon Richardson who fouled out had 12 points, 5 rebounds, 2 assists, Colin Young had 10 points, 5 rebounds, 2 assist, and Nauqante Hardy added another 8 points.
Findlay Prep is a much bigger name with a much more highlight reel roster, consisting of Juniors P.J. Washington, Markus Howard, and Skylar Mays. All of which had incredible games. Mays was aggressive, driving to the basket at will, having himself 21 points, 5 rebounds, 3 assists, and 2 steals. Howard, who’s a strong point guard, was shooting the ball well, and passing the ball well. He had 13 points, 3 rebounds. Washington was looking strong, finishing at the rim. He added a double-double of 15 points, 13 rebounds, 3 blocks, and 2 assists. Their game plan was to keep Miller Grove out of the paint, and stop them from driving to the rim. This worked until Miller Grove started to force their way to the rim or would settle for 3’s that hit their mark.