Saturday, January 15, 2011
Behind a 30-point performance by junior guard Liz Pettis, the Cougars blew out defending champion Conant 51-29 in a rematch of last year’s Class M title game. Campbell took control early in this one as they jumped out to an early 20 - 7 lead behind 15 first quarter points by Pettis. Pettis’ 15-point first quarter barrage included three 3-pointers. She would also grab a team-high 10 rebounds.
Things would get worse for Conant as the lead would skyrocket to 28-7 early in the second quarter. Conant would make a couple of runs, but the early Cougars barrage was too much for the defending Class M champs to overcome.
Defensively, Campbell held Southern New Hampshire University bound guard Brooke Springfield (our #3 ranked player) to just 10 points on the evening. Both teams are now 7 - 1 and will meet up again on February 4th in Jaffrey.
Khadijah Ellison (5’9”, Burke High School) - Ellison could possibly be one of the most gifted players we have seen in this area in a long time. Ellison is a high flying guard with extreme athleticism. She is a very good shooter from the outside but is equally as good at attacking the rim and finishing. She has very long arms and a great set of hands which allows her to be a good defender when she wants to play defense. At times her lack of effort and unwillingness to play hard put a damper on what she is capable of doing on the court. If Ellison can improve on her effort and learn to play the game with a purpose the sky is the limit for her.
Natalie Gomez (5’7”, Andover High School) - Gomez is a ultra quick point guard who thrives in the open court. Gomez loves to play the game at a high pace and has the ability to score in bunches. Gomez is a streaky shooter from beyond the arc, and when she's on she puts up big numbers. Gomez has a great handle which allows her to go anywhere on the court. What impresses us the most about Gomez is her middle game. She uses a variety of dribble moves to get into the lane for easy pull ups. Gomez seems to thrive while she is in the spotlight. She likes to have the ball in critical stages of the game. Already committed to Marist University, Gomez has a chance to be a impact player right away at the next level.
Nicole Beresford (6’1”, Marshfield High School) Beresford is a 6’1” combo forward who has great size and strength. Beresford also has a very good skill package. She is a match up problem for most forwards her size because she has the ability to play inside-out. She is comfortable with facing up and knocking down a jump shot. Beresford can also go to the low post and score. Beresford is a very physical player who plays hard and with a purpose. Due to her size,strength, and skills package, Beresford may have the best chance of any player in the class of making an immediate impact at the collegiate level.
Blake Dietrick (5’10”, Wellesley High School) – Dietrick can do it all on the floor. Dietrick is a great athlete who plays the game with great intensity. Last high school season Dietrick led her team in scoring, rebounds, assist , and steals. She is a very streaky scorer and is capable of putting up big numbers fast. Dietrick plays the game the way it should be played “Hard”.
Brenna Gonsalves (5'10”, Coyle Cassidy High School) – Gonsalves is a super quick guard who is excellent in the open floor. Gonsalves has a very quick first step which makes her very hard to guard off the dribble. She gets to the rim at ease and has the ability to finish in traffic. She needs to become a more consistent shooter from the outside in order to be effective at the next level.
Tori Faieta (6’2”, St.Mary’s High School) - Faieta is a tough hard nose center who possesses a great basketball IQ. Faieta is the ultimate facilitator on the floor. She rebounds extremely well and she is also a great passer from the low block. Faieta is a very physical player who seems to never take a play off. She has a good low post game and can also step out and make a 15 footer.
Kellie MacDonald (6’0”, Danvers High School) - MacDonald may be one of the most improved players in the class. MacDonald is extremely versatile and very athletic. She can knock down shots beyond the arc and also put it to the floor and attack the rim. MacDonald is very fast and she uses her speed to fill lanes for easy lay ups. She seems to always make big plays in the course of the game to help her team win. MacDonald hasn’t even scratched the surface of how could she can be. It will be fun to watch her progress over the next year.
Gabie Polce (5’9", Central Catholic High School) – Polce is an athletic guard who plays hard and with a purpose. Polce is an ultimate competitor who rarely takes a possession off. She has a very strong basketball IQ which she uses to compete against players that are more athletic than her. Polce is very good in the open court at attacking the rim or finding teammates for an easy lay up. She can also knock down a three well enough to make her a threat out there. Polce is also a very good on the ball defender. The best word to describe Polce is the fact that she is a “Winner”. Polce needs to continue to improve her skill set to ready her for the next level.
Amber Dillon (5’4”, Brookline High School) - Dillon is an ultra quick point guard who has a great handle and can get to the rim on just about anyone. Dillon is a very exciting player to watch due to her flashy play. She has great court vision and plays the game at a very fast pace. She has a variety of offensive moves that she uses to gain advantages over the defense. Dillon is also a very solid defender.
Amy Pelletier (5'8", Bishop Fenwick High School) – Pelletier is a point guard who has a great all-around game. She is a very consistent player who possesses a great basketball IQ. Pelletier can shoot the ball very well beyond the Arc. She can also attack the basket and finish or make an easy dish to a teammate. Dillon is a very good competitor who plays hard and with a purpose.
Class of 2012
Tianna Johnson (5’6”, New Mission High School) – Johnson is an ultra quick point guard who sees the floor extremely well. Johnson has a great handle and basketball awareness which is evident every time we see her play. She has great court vision and is always willing to set up a teammate for an easy basket. Johnson is a good defender who loves to pressure the ball the length of the floor. She is the ultimate floor general.
Lexi Sells (5’10", Bishop Feehan )- We saw play Sell plays in December and we love her game. Sells is a combo guard who can score in a variety of ways. Sells is extremely athletic and plays the game with great intensity. Sells is also a lock down defender who creates a great deal of offense through her defensive play. Sells is a good shooter who can knock down a three as well as mid-range jumpers. Great rebounder for her size.
Brooke Stewart (5’10”, Masconomet High School) - Stewart is a 5’10 guard who can play every position on the floor. She has had an exceptional start to this season as she is averaging better than 25 points per game. Stewart has a natural knack for putting the ball in the basket, whether it comes from a 3 beyond the arc, filling the lane for an easy lay up, or getting an offensive put back. Stewart knows how to fill up the stat sheet. Stewart is also very physical and is a tough match up for opposing guards. Stewart is also an exceptional rebounder. Her versatility and toughest make her definite prospect at the next level.
Class of 2013
Olivia Healy (5’10”, Reading High School) – Healy is a tough combo forward who can play inside and out. She plays the game with great intensity. Healy has the ability to score in traffic off the dribble and can knock down the open three. Her versatility and toughness make her a tough matchup for most forwards her age.
Ashley Lutz (6’1”, Lincoln Sudbury High School) - Lutz is a multi purpose player. We got a chance to see Lutz a few times over the past year and she is better each time we see her. Lutz has a great shooting touch from the outside and also has the ability to put the ball on the floor. Plays the game with great intensity. Lutz is very physical and already has a college frame which helps her battle on the boards. She has great upside.
Casey McLaughlin (6’0”, Central Catholic High School) – McLaughlin is an extremely athletic forward who loves to attack the basket. McLaughlin has one of the quickest first steps for any player in the state. She’s a relentless competitor who is also looking to make plays. Very good rebounder and finisher around the basket.
Gracie Miller (6’2”, Wellesley High School) - Miller is a 6’2 center who can do it all. Miller has great touch from 15 feet in. She has very good footwork on the block and she also runs the floor exceptionally well. Miller has a knack for always going to the open spots on the floor freeing her up for easy hoops. She has very long arms making her a good shot blocker and rebounder. Miller possibly has the greatest upside in the class of 2013.
Ara Talkov (5’11”, Swampscott High School) – Talkov is a guard who can do it all. She can knock it down from behind the arc, and also beat defenders off the dribble. Talkov is extremely aggressive offensively as she is always searching for ways to score. She is also very good at getting out in transition and finishing at the end of the break.
Friday, January 14, 2011
It was all Manchester Essex tonight right from the get go as the Hornets jumped on North Andover right from the opening tip. Manchester out played North Andover all night long beating them to almost every 50/50 ball and beating them to balls on the glass. The result was an early lead for Manchester that they would never relinquish.
Joe Mussachia was a man against boys in this one as he dominated every aspect of the game. He took control of the glass, knocked down two threes, found his way into the middle of the defense and distributed the basketball on the dime. Mussachia also penetrated to the basket and finished on several occassions. One time in the third quarter, Mussachia drove baseline and missed a short runner, but one handed the miss for a pretty finish. North Andover had no answer for Mussachia or the swarming play of the Hornets.
Mussachia would establish himself on the boards early as he would rebound and lead a transition break for a basket and then would put back an offensive rebound to give Manchester an early 6 - 0 lead. Things would continue to get worse for North Andover as 5'10" Hornet point guard Sean Nally would finish a transition basket to make the lead 15-5. The lead would grow to 22 - 5 on a Mussachia reverse lay-up and a minute later Mussachia would find junior guard Chris Bishop (11 points) for a three to make the score 28 - 8 Manchester. North Andover's Sophomore guard Derek Collins (19 points, 5 steals) would start North Andover's best four minutes of the night by hitting a three the next time down the court to make the score 28-11. Junior forward Zach Karalis (16 points) would get the next five points as he would knock down a three of his own and hit a pull-up in the lane. Collins would make two more three's back-to-back to make the score 28-20 and then 28-23. That was as close as North Andover would get as Manchester went into the half leading 30 - 23.
Manchester would come out in the second half the exact way they started the game on a 7 - 0 run to move the score to 37 - 23. North Andover would still have a couple of runs left though as they would cut the lead to 44 - 39 on a Karalis steal and sophomore Jake MacLean's finish. Nally would score a big basket as the third quarter wound down to put Manchester ahead 46-39 at the end of three. Manchester would extend the lead to double-digits again in the fourth quarter with the final becoming inevitable.
Those Who Impressed:
Joe Mussachia (6'5", sr. forward, Manchester) - Mussachia gets better and better every time we see him. He dominated every aspect of this basketball game as he was relentless all night long. Everything in has game has improved including his ability to put the ball in the basket, his shooting, and especially his ability to the pass the ball. The one thing that hasn't changed is how hard this young man plays the game. He's a coaches dream.
Derek Collins (6'2", so. guard, North Andover) - Collins is an athletic guard that shows us a lot of things every time we see him play. He has a reputation of putting up numbers fast and tonight was no different as he had three trey's in the 2nd quarter to lead the North Andover's come back. We love when he puts the ball on the floor and goes North-South. Tonight he showed his ability to get to rim and finish as well as his ability to distribute the ball off penetration. Now that Collins has earned the reputation as being a scorer, he needs to move better without the basketball so that he is able to provide himself quality scoring opportunities.
Sean Nally (5'10", jr. pg, Manchester) - Nally played an excellent game tonight as he showed he can handle the basketball and make sound decisions under pressure. Nally was cool, calm, and collected all night long as he advanced the ball through the press. Added to that, Nally showed that he can't be left open, as he nailed a couple of big threes and had a couple of nice finishes around the basket.
Zach Karalis (6'3", jr. forward, North Andover) - Karalis can do some of everything including knocking down the three, making the pull-up, and getting to the rim. What was most impressive about Karalis was the fact that he did not shoot the ball well tonight, but still found ways to put the ball in the basket. Part of the reason is he move so well without the basketball and the other part is that he knows how to find himself opportunities.
Chris Bishop (6'1", jr. guard, Manchester) - Bishop scored double-digit points tonight and was impressive in doing so. He knocked down some key threes and added some key transition baskets. Bishop also played within himself and made smart decisions with the basketball all night long.
Thursday, January 13, 2011
Olivia Healy (our #1 ranked Mass Soph) and Morgan O'Brien (our # 8 ranked Mass Soph) combined for 42 of Reading's 60 points to lead Reading (our #8 ranked team) over Woburn (our #20 ranked team) 60 - 44 on Tuesday evening.
With Providence College's assistant coach looking on, Healy did not disappoint as she scored 29 points (including 4 three pointers) and added 15 rebounds in the battle of the two undefeated teams. In our evaluation of Healy, we have described her as a tough combo forward who can play inside and out. She plays the game with great intensity. Healy has the ability to score in traffic off the dribble and can knock down the open three. Her versatility and toughness make her a tough matchup at any position.
Morgan O'Brien had a three pointer of her own as well as a nice drive to the basket on her way to 13 points. O'Brien is quite a talent of her own has she as a pretty stroke that extends well beyond the three point arc. O'Brien has also improved on her ability to put the ball on the floor, as well her ability to get to the basket, and finish.
Woburn was led by junior Erin Marshall who scored 13 points.
The Rockets moved to 7-0 in Middlesex League play and 9-0 overall and surely made a statement of why they are one of the best teams in Massachusetts. Woburn suffered there first loss of the season and moved to 6-1 in League play and 7-1 overall.
Pelham High School's Steve Spirou, who is our #6 ranked player in the NH Class of 2011 has committed to play basketball at Trinity College in Hartford, CT. Trinity plays in the the NESCAC (New England Small College Athletic Conference), which is one of the best Division III conferences in the country for both academics and basketball.
Spirou is a 6'4" small forward that does a little bet of everything, most importantly he competes to win. Every time the Mass & NH High School Basketball Report has watch Spirou play, we leave the gym happy. We have often said that he plays the game the way it's supposed to be played, i.e., always hard and with a purpose. Spirou is an all around player. He has an excellent basketball I.Q., can knock down shots and is active around the basket. Spirou is intriguing as he does so many things to help a team win. Spirou has already scored 1,000 high school points, been selected as a NH All-State player, and has a Class I State Championship under his belt.
Trinity head coach James Cosgrove, is the father of Casey Cosgrove was a sensational player at Andover High School, earning a scholarship to Quinnipiac University before finishing his career playing for dad at Adelphi University. Coach Cosgrove is only in his 1st season at the Division III NESCAC school, but he has a great pick-up in Spirou and we expect there will be a couple of more local talents that will soon fine there way to Trinity as well.
Tuesday, January 11, 2011
The Mass & NH High School Basketball Report visited Weymouth High School to watch sophomore Jared Terrell (our #2 rated sophomore, 16 points). Terrell provided plenty of highlights tonight as Weymouth held off Newton North 56-51 to remain undefeated at 8-0 on the season. Terrell had a break away dunk early in the game as he elevated way above the rim to put Weymouth up early 7-2. Terrell would then show us a cross-over to pull-up to end the first quarter to put the Wildcats up 13-9 at the end of the first quarter. Weymouth would go on a 6-0 run to start the second quarter to extend the lead 19-9 before Newton North's Mike Thorpe (our #9 rated junior, 22 points) would strike back with the next six points and Newton North would trail 23-20 at the end of the first half.
Junior Khary Bailey-Smith (10 points, 11 rebounds) who would be the catalyst for Weymouth most of the night scored the first four points of the second half to move the Weymouth lead to 27-10. Thorpe would score 10 straight points for Newton North and after a Aaron Falzon (our #1 rated freshman, 10 points, 6 rebounds) lay-up Newton North would lead 34-29 and 36-34 at the end of three quarters.
A Terrell dunk early in the fourth quarter would tie the game at 37-37, and before you knew it, a second dunk and a Terrell steal would leave Weymouth with a 45-39 lead. Newton North's Falzon would hit a big 3 to narrow the lead to 49-46, but Weymouth junior Damien Lugey would make 5 free throws down the stretch for Weymouth.
Who Impressed Tonight:
Jared Terrell (6'3', guard, Weymouth) - Terrell has a great basketball body as he his long and well cut up. Terrell is extremely athletic and can make a highlight real off of one game. Tonight was no different as he showed us on four different occasions that he can soar way above the rim and slam it home. Terrell also showed us that he has some game from the perimeter as he can put it on the floor and that he as a good midrange game with some impressive fade away pull-ups.
Aaron Falzon (6'7", small forward, Newton North) - Falzon showed us that he can play inside and out. He had a couple of nice looking moves on the block, knocked down a three, and had a nice shot fake to a drive. Falzon has excellent rotation on the basketball which we observed when he stroked the three and finished two clutch free throws late in the game. He is most effective from the perimeter as he can knock down shots, pass, and put the ball to the floor.
Mike Thorpe (6'0", guard, Newton North) - Thorpe is a seasoned basketball player that knows how to score the basketball in a variety of ways. He is not exceptionally athletic, but can find his way to the rim. Thorpe is a streaky three point shooter and thus can knock down several in a row. He also has a nice shot fake, to one dribble, to a sweet looking pull-up.
Khary Baily-Smith (6'1", forward, Weymouth) - An undersized forward, Lugay is very athletic and strong and gets after the glass on both ends. He is a fierce competitor and came up with several big rebounds and put-backs.
On December 22 Westfield's Joe Mead, one of the top big men in WMass was punched in the jaw by a Commerce player. Mead suffered a broken jaw and will be lucky to return to his undefeated Westfield team before the WMass Tournament. The cell phone video released on You Tube last week shows players from both teams going after a loose ball with some shoving afterward. The video then shows what appears to be a sucker punch landing on and breaking Mead's jaw.
The player throwing the punched was disciplined under one of the MIAA rules and suspended two games for the incident. He has since returned to the Commerce line-up. This incident is of course unfortunate, as Mead will miss most of his junior season. Lessons need to learned, especially regarding violence in high school sports, and I think it is pretty obvious after watching the video below that someone missed the boat here. You judge for yourself.
Monday, January 10, 2011
Senior guard Sam Longwell (our #21 ranked senior) continued with his hot hand last night as he scored 30 points while hitting five three pointers to lead the Acton-Boxboro (#14 ranked) boys basketball team to an 80-70 victory over Lawrence (#6 ranked) during non-league action yesterday at Lawrence High School. On Friday night, Longwell also scored a career-high 33 points, including a jump shot that broke a 43-43 tie early in the fourth quarter and gave Acton-Boxboro a 60 -50 win over Wayland. Longwell
Sunday, January 9, 2011
The MA & NH High School Basketball Report has seen much basketball this high school season. Below are the updated evaluations of the boys prospects in Massachusetts. Updates will continue through the high school season.
Jaylan Alicia (5'10", Lawrence High School) - winter 2011 evaluation -Alicia is an athletic guard that showed that he can score the basketball in a number of ways. He has a nice stroke from behind the arc, is impressive with the pull-up off the dribble, and showed us a nice floater over the big man. The bottom line is that he can score the basketball. Alicia is a hidden gem that has not gotten enough exposure since he did not play on the AAU circuit. Victor Aytche (6'3", Springfield Central) – Aytche is an athletic slasher that gets to the rim and finishes from a variety of different angles. He also has a nose for the ball as he often finds a way to get his hands on the offensive glass. Joe Bramanti (6'1", Andover High School) - Bramanti has earned a reputation of getting it done. While not gifted with great height, length, or athleticism, Bramanti seems to find a way to get it done. Bramanti is powerful and can make his defender pay when he attacks the basket and he can also knock down the three if left uncovered. Bramanti was offered a scholarship from Stonehill College and is in discussions with high level educational institutions such as Darmouth. winter 2011 evaluation - Bramanti continues to find a way to get it done and attack the basket from the perimeter. Bramanti has improved pull-up and outside stroke. Bramanti really compete and it is unfortunate that he is limited by height, length, and athleticism.
Mack Burt (2011, Saint John's Prep, MA) - Burt is a 6'4" small forward who is an aggressive and active player. We first saw him in the North Sectional finals at the Garden as he had an outstanding effort knocking down threes and grabbing rebounds for St. John's Prep in their close loss to Central Catholic. This Spring and Summer, Burt continued his exceptional play as he used his physical body to both rebound and finish around the rim. Burt also stepped away and knocked down the three on a consistent basis.
Donald Celestin (6'3", Greater Lawrence Technical School ) - Celestin creates as much space off his crossover as anybody on this list. Celestin is a natural scorer that can score the ball in a variety of ways. He has much bounce and has a sweet looking mid-range pull-up. Added to all that, the athletic guard can also play the game above the rim. winter 2011 evaluations - Celestin is an athletic and long guard that has a pretty looking game and can score the basketball with the best players in Mass. Celestin has a sweet looking cross-over to a jump shot. Celestin needs to be able to go right and needs to play the game with more intensity.
Bill Claflin (6'5", Senior forward, Woburn) - winter 2011 evaluations - Claflin showed that he has good footwork and excellent touch around the basket as he scored using both hands and from a variety of different angles. Claflin also competed extremely hard on the glass as he dominated the paint on both ends of the floor. He is much improved from last year.
Pat Connaughton (6'4", St. John's Prep) – Much has been said about Pat Connaughton's play this summer as he the 6'4" guard came out of nowhere to earn scholarships at Notre Dame, Tennessee, UCLA and others. He was sensational in the Super 16 in Connecticut proving his worth against highly regarded Jermaine Sanders and his New Heights team. Things only got better in Orlando as Connaughton played incredibly well and consequently took his recruitment to the very highest levels with Notre Dame, Tennessee, UCLA, and more offering scholarships. Connaughton has proved himself more than anything else to be a winner as he competes on every possession. He is a complete player that does some of everything. He makes shots, rebounds well from the guard spot, handles the ball effectively, and has a great body and excellent athleticism. Connaughton is the old fashion athlete that is a high major baseball prospect and would be the starting quarter back for St. John's Prep if he decided to put on the pads. winter 2011 evaluation - Connaughton has put up numbers that are through the roof this winter and has looked good at doing it. He's a winner and a pleasure to watch play. Connaughton's weakness is obvious as everybody is forcing him to go left. He need's to sure up the handle as he makes the transition to the Big East and Notre Dame.
Mathew Coppola (6'1" Watertown High School) - Coppola has earned the reputation as a guy that plays hard and with a purpose. He also is known for his long-range shooting. This Spring and Summer he showed he has developed his body and has showed he can also get into the lane as well as rebound on both ends of the floor. winter 2011 evaluation - Coppola has shot lights up all season long and has put together many big scoring games. He is an improved scorer and has proved that he knows how to win as Watertown has surprised Middlesex teams this year and are now the favorites to win the league. Coppola needs to work on putting the ball to the floor especially in a North-South fashion. He also needs to develop a better midrange game to go along with his proficient thee point shooting skills.
Erno Deshommes (6'4", Everett High School) - winter 2011 evaluation - the senior had a big night around the basket scoring 23 points on way to Everett's 61-44 victory over Haverhill. Deshommes really gets after it and is not afraid to mix it down low.
Musa Elsir (6'3", West Springfield High School) – Elsir has an excellent body and uses it effectively when he plays. He has a solid handle for a wing and can make the mid-range jump shot.
Tevin Falzon (6'7", Newton North High School) - There is no doubt that this kid is talented. At 6’7, Falzon is highly skilled and can play both inside and out. He showed that he can put the ball on the floor, step out and knock down mid-range jump shots, and finish underneath the hoop. Whenn he plays hard, he can dominatethe game because of his size and skill. Falzon is a tough player to box out which is one of the reasons why he grabs many offensive rebounds.
Alex Garstka - (6'1", Wesfield High School) - winter 2011 evaluation - Alex Garstka has had several big evenings for Westfield this year incluing pumping in 37 points against Chicopee. Garstka can score from well beyond the arc and can get to the rim and finish as well.
Pat Gooden (6'2", Belchertown High School)– We first saw Gooden at our own Mass & NH High School All-Star game. On that evening, Gooden showed that he can get open and make shots against top notch competition. He makes the three by both spotting up and coming off screens.
Mike Gorman (5'10". Methuen High School) - winter 2011 evaluation - Gorman is an excellent floor general who makes those around him better. He sees the floor well and is an excellent distributor of the basketball. Don't be fooled though, Gorman can really stroke the basketball from down town. As a matter of fact, if we have one negative about his game, it is the fact that he doesn't shoot it enough.
Trey Jones (5'8", Reading High School) - Jones is an athletic guard who gets wherever he wants with his dribble. We have also watched Jones pull up from long-long range and make the jumpers. Beause of his blazing speed, if the youngster were to work on his game he could be a real problem. winter 2011 evaluation - Jones continued to show us blazing speed and an improved offensive arsenal as he can score in many different ways. The most impressive thing about Jones is his improvement in decision making especially given he is a point guard. Jones has made some great passes this Winter. The knock on Jones is that he doesn't compete on every play, and he needs to given his size.
Matt Kneece (6'8", Shrewsbury High School) - Kneece is 6’8 with a strong body. As a result he is able to overpower his opponent in the paint. He has a good looking drop step and is an impossible guard at the high school level when he attacks the rim.
Sam Longwell (6'2", Acton Boxborough) - Longwell is a sound basketball player that does a lot of little things right. Longwell is a seasoned basketball player that has an excellent understanding of the game and is a good team player. Nonetheless, Longwell knows when to attack the rim, and knows when and how to make shots. winter 2011 evaluation - longwell has become a better shooter, especially from behind the arc, as well as a scorer since the summer months. He continues to show that he makes those around him better. Longwell needs to continue to develop a better midrange geame and become even more effective at attacking the rim.
Raudy Minaye (6'3", Methuen High School) - Minaye is a scorer and if he has a weakness it is that he looks to score to often. There is no doubt that Minaye has a scorer's mindset. When he's on, we have seen Minaye put a lot of points on the board in a hurry. winter 2011 evaluation - Minaye showed us he can score the ball from behind the arc. Minaye needs to improve his game off the dribble.
winter 2011 evaluation - Morales showed us that he is still the winner we said he was over the Summer. Morales is still limited in his ability to score the basketball, but would surely make a great division III basketball player. He competes and knows how to win.
Kachi Nzerem (6'5", New Mission) – Nzerem has a long athletic body with a great physique. We loved him when we saw him in early July at the Hoop Mountain Super Week II. Nzerum played exceptionally well the entire week by making plays above the rim on both ends of the floor. Nzerem continued to play well during the middle portion of the live period as Division I coaches were intrigued because of his explosive combination of power and athleticism in addition to a good shooting touch from behind the three-point arc. winter 2011 evaluation - We really like his game as it very polished offensive game. At 6'5" he can step away and knock down threes. He is a scholarship player that can play at the divison I level if he is willing to compete on every possession.
Richard Rogers (6'4", St. John's Shrewsbury) - Rogers is an all purpose forward who can get it done in a variety of ways. His best stuff usually comes in transition type basketball game as he is very effective scoring around the basket. Rogers has a nice midrange game that include a sound pull-up jumper.
Mickel Simpson (6'4", Woburn High School) - Simpson has had an impressive Spring and Summer playing the point guard position. Simpson has size and athleticism. During this past AAU season, we saw Simpson take the ball down the lane for an impressive dunk, and then a couple of minutes later, he stuck a pretty looking long range three. Simpson needs to get a better understanding of the game, but there is no doubt that is offensive capability is superb. winter 2011 evaluation - Simpson has great size and athleticism for a point guard and looks like he should dominate a basketball game. He can shoot it from long range, and explode at the rim. Simpson weakness is that he doesn't have the greatest set of hands and sometimes this results in unforced turnovers.
Evan Sheehan (6'1", senior guard, Central) - winter 2011 evaluation - Sheehan is an athletic guard that can do a bit of everything. He can knock down the three, put the ball to the floor, and rebound the basketball from the guard position. He also showed he can perform in the clutch. Sheehan can be the difference maker for Central come playoff time.
Khary Bailey-Smith (6'0", forward, Weymouth) - winter 2011 evaluation - An undersized forward, Lugay is very athletic and strong and gets after the glass on both ends. He is a fierce competitor who comes up with several big rebounds and put-backs. Lugay way needs to improve his perimeter skills some so that is able to step away from the basket.
Chris Bishop (6'1", Manchester) - Bishop can do a little bit of everything. He can knock down the three and is very effective in getting out in front for transition baskets. Bishop also plays within himself and makes smart decisions with the basketball.
Adam Bramanti (6'1", Masconomet Regional High School) - Bramanti has game and can score in a multitude of different ways. He has a sweet looking three point stroke and an excellent dribble to pull-up. He can also finish around the rim, as well as in the lane with floaters and pull-ups. As he continues to improve his skill set, Bramanti will become stronger and more confident attacking the basket and finishing at the rim. winter 2011 evaluaiton - Bramanti has got a lot of attention at Masconomet this winter and has faced box-in-ones and other trick defenses. Nonetheless, Bramanti has game and can shoot off the dribble as well as from behind the arc. Bramanti lacks athleticism, but the bottom line with this young man is that he can score the basketball.
Mike Carbone (5'9", Saint John's Prep) - Carbone is a scrappy player that gets it done on both ends of the floor. He plays extremely hard and creates opportunities for himself in transition. Carbone can also knock down the three and always seems to come up with the big basket. winter 2011 evaluation - Carbone has had some real nice games for the Prep this winter putting up over 20 points more than once. Carbone competes on every possession and doesn't like to lose. Carbone is limited in size and athletically, but he's a winner.
Rony Fernandez (5'10", Charlestown High School) Fernandez is a an excellent shooter who can make things happen off the dribble.
Steve Haladyna (6'3", Saint John's Prep) - The 6'3" Haladyna just makes plays. Although not always pretty, Haladyna finds a way to put the ball in the basket. He competes extremely hard and has a great knack for the basketball, especially off the offensive boards. Haladyna needs some work on his skills so that he becomes a better shooter and more effective off the dribble. winter 2011 evaluation - Same old Haladyna. Gets his hand on all the 50/50 balls and finishes all the garbage around the basket. Haladyna is also tough wen he gets head of steam from the wing. Haladyna could be real special if he develops his ball handling and shooting stroke.
Dana Hines (6'7", Corcord Carlisle) - Hines is a big and powerful forward who is still raw. But his size and strength inside makes him a factor in most basketball games he competes in. Hines is still a work in progress, but his upside is impressive. Hines need to work on finishing around the basket.
Jake Laymen (6'7", King Phillips) - Laymen had one of the best summers of all players in New England. Laymen is a long forward with a good built and soft shooting touch. Layman showed this Spring and Summer that he has a chance to play at a high-major level. Laymen is impressive in transition, and can finish well above the rim. He also has a nice stroke from behind the three point arc. Much of what Laymen has is still potential, but we are more than confident that his potential will be realized. winter 2011 evaluation - He's just real good. He's a 6'7" guard who has made great improvements over the last year. He's realizing the potential we had talked about and he is now a high major prospect. We just will have to wait and see if he goes to college or takes an extra year to up his stock at Prep school.
Craig Luschenat (5'10", junior point guard, Andover) - winter 2011 evaluation - Luschenat is a solid player that takes care of the basketball under pressure and finds the open man. As an added bonus for a point guard, Luschenat can knock down both the three and midrange pull-ups.
Akosa Maduegbunam (6'3", Charlestown High School) - Maduegbunam is an athletic guard that can get to ther rim and finish well above the cylinder. Maduegbunam also has an improved stroke as he is having more success knocking down the three. winter 2011 evaluation - Maduegbunam has continued to improve and can really attack the rim based on his athleticism. Maduegbunam future will depend on how far his skill set comes over the nest year.
Peter Miller (6'9", Winchester HS)- Miller is a fundamentally sound big man that had his stock increase this Spring and Summer. Miller was successful in catching and finishing with a smooth touch. Miller also showed that he can move away from the basket a bit and make the 12 foot jumper. Miller needs to be a little more aggressive and get stronger, and he will be a division 1 prospect. winter 2011 evaluation - Miller continues to improve his skill set as he has nice touch both in close and from 15 feet away. Miller needs to continue to get stronger and become more aggressive.
Trevon Moore (6'0", East Boston High School) – He has a gear beyond most with great speed and quickness and uses it to make plays on both sides of the court. He is super creative with his dribble penetration and no less effective on the defensive end where he consistently forces the opposition into turnovers.
Sean Nally (5'10", Manchester) - winter 2011 evaluation - Nally is an intelligent point guard who makes sound decisions under pressure. Nally is cool, calm, and collected with the basketball in his hands as he makes smart decisions with hte basketball. He also showed us that he can not be left open as he can knock down the open three and get to the rim and finish around the basket. Nally lacks a little bit of athleticism, but makes up with his determination.
Jared Neumann (6'3", Northampton High School) – Neumann can rebound and finish in traffic and has the skills to push the ball up the floor himself. Neumann has much potential as his body is still in the developmental phase.Chris O'Keefe (6'2", jr. guard, Lexington) - .O'Keefe had a great body and is effective when he uses it. O'Keefe skill set needs continued work if he wants to develop into an effective guard.
Luis Puello (5'10", Central Catholic High School) - Puello plays the game as hard as any player in New England. He competes on every play and makes every dribble a nightmare for opponents that don't have an exceptional handle of the basketball. Puello gets his hands on a ton of basketballs and is an exceptional rebounder given his height. Although not a great scorer, he gets points off of pure hustle. He's a winner. winter 2011 evaluation - Puello still plays harder than anybody in New England. He competes on every possession and wins games. His weaknesses remain the same as his size and skill don't add up.
Kenny Reed (5'10", Reading High School) - This summer was our first look at the sophomore guard and we came away impressed. He’s a strong and powerful point who goes to the rim with authority and is equally effective creating for others thanks to some terrific court vision. Reed is also a scoring point guard who finds many ways to put the ball in the hoop. Like many on this list, with some skill work, Reed has a chance to be special. winter 2011 evaluation - Reed still has a chance to be a special player as he can finsih acrobatically around the rim and has a good understanding of the game. Reed needs to compete every time down the floor.
Parker Rogers (5’11”, jr., Haverhill) - winter 2011 evaluation - Rogers is an explosive southpaw guard that has multiple gears. He is extremely athletic and can get to the rim. Rogers has made significant improvements since last year and will be one talented high school basketball player during his senior campaign.
Rakim Smith-Lartey ( 5’6”, Somerville High School) – He is good with the ball and very crafty inside the lane as he is able to get things done.
Patrick Talentino (6'0", Saint John's Shrewsbury) – We first saw Talentino at our own MA-NH High School Basketball Report All-Star game. Talentino has a nice dependable shooting stroke, a good understanding of the game, as well as the ability to handle and pass the basketball.
Maurice Taylor (6'2", Cambridge Ringe and Latin)- Taylor is still a baby physically. His length and athleticism are tremendous, and he has shown a nice mid-range game. Taylor can handle the ball some in the open court and competes hard. It will be interesting to watch him develop over the next year. winter 2011 evaluation - Taylor competes hard and plays to win. He does have a mid-rnge game and can put the ball onto the floor some. However given his size, Taylor's skill set needs to develop rapidly.
Mike Thorpe (6'0", Newton North High School) – Thorpe does not have the explosive nature of many other guards, but his basketball I.Q. is extremely high. He’s creative and crafty inside the lane, is a knockdown three-point shooter with an equally good pull-up game. - winter 2011 evaluation - Thorpe is a seasoned basketball player that knows how to score the basketball in a variety of ways. He was impressive when we saw him scoring in a multitude of ways. He is not exceptionally athletic, but continues to be crafty and creative and thus can find his way to the rim. Thorpe is a streaky three point shooter and thus can knock down several in a row. He also has a nice shot fake, to one dribble, to a sweet looking pull. Thorpe needs to sure up his handle so he is less likely to turn the ball over in the open court.
Jerry Ellis-Williams (6'5", jr. forward, Reading) - winter 2011 evaluation - Ellis-Williams had some moments tonight as he had some nice finishes around the basket and some impressive rebounds. Ellis-Williams also showed he is able to step away and make shots. Ellis-Williams needs to play more physical, especially around the basket.
Class of 2013
Nate Anderson (6'6", New Mission High School) – Anderson is still a work in progress, but he has length and is likely to become a force in the paint. winter 2011 evaluation - Anderson showed us that he has a good motor and is very aggressive. Given his size and athleticism, if he continues to work hard, Anderson could become a very good player.
LQuan Arnum (5'6", Dartmouth High School) - Arnum creates many problems for his opponents. He comes up with a boatload of steals and converts many of them to easy baskets. Defensively, he is very talented and should look to improve his offensive game so that he may become a great all-around player.
Riyad Asad (6'2", West Springfield High School)– Asad has become an extremely smooth and versatile scorer who puts the ball in the basket in a variety of different ways.
Joel Barroa (6'4', Central Catholic High School) - Barroa is an athletic and long wingman that competes hard and gets his hands on many balls. Barroa can really run the floor and is exceptional in transition. He also has a nice stroke and can knock down the three. Barroa is a determined rebounder and gets after it on the glass. Barroa's weakness may be that he doesn't have the greatest set of hands and needs to work on that area. winter 2011 evaluation - Berroa has great lenght and size and gave us some of everything when we saw him including double-digit rebounds, a nice stroke from behind the three, and the ability to put the ball to the floor. His weakness is still his hands.
Jaylen Blakely (5'9", Brockton High School) – Blakely is a scoring threat every time he touches the ball. He is a deep threat from the point guard position as he has a picture perfect release to his jumper. Not one dimensional, Blakely is equally effective slashing to the basket.
Josh Bosworth (6'3", East Longmeadow High School) - Bosworth is still a baby physically but has a good upside.
Aaron Calixte (5'10", Stoughton HS) – Has gear beyond most others and uses it to make plays on both ends of the floor. Great body, fast and effective.
Derek Collins (6'2", North Andover High School) - Collins has plenty of game as he can score the basketball in more ways than anybody on the list. In the half court offense, Collins can get any where he want to go. He can make shots from anywhere on the floor. He can knock down the three, make the pull-up, finish the floater, and has some pretty up and under moves. He is masterful in creating space off the dribble and has a deadly pull-up as well as some acrobatic finishes around the basket. Collins is also athletic and strong and knows how to use his body effectively. Collins needs to improve his ability to handle the basketball in the open court. 2011 winter evaluations - Collins is one of the best scorers in the State and showed us on several occassions that he can get points in bunches. Collins is an athletic guard that can put the ball on the floor and finish acrobatically around the basket. He has been stroking it very well for North Andover this year as he has a quick and deadly release. His pull-up is as pretty. We can invision Collins shot faking, and penetrating down the lane and dunking in the near future. Added to all this, Collins has a great understanding of the game and is a great passer. If Collins is willing to put the time in to be able to transition to point guard, he will make himself a real special prospect.
Norris Cuevas (6'0", Springfield Central High School )– Cuevas is a strong and physical guard that goes to the rim with a purpose. Cuevas showed us a much better jump shot this Spring and Summer.
Sam Dowden (6'4", Andover High School) - The 6'4" swingman is active all over the court. Dowden once known has a four man has done an exceptional job transitioning his game to that of a perimeter player. Dowden has a great stroke and can knock down shots from well beyond the arc. He also has a pretty crossover to a pull-up and has much success getting to the rim with both hands. Added to that, Dowden is an exceptional rebounder. What we like best about Sam Dowden is his desire to play and improve. Dowden needs to continue to develop his guard skills. winter 2011 evaluation - Dowden is unique in that he can do it all as he can score from deep, has a great pull-up, and can put the ball to the floor with both hands and get to the rim and finish. Added to that, the sophomore competes hard on the glass and plays with intensity. Having all these talents, Dowden is the type of high school player that should put up much bigger numbers. Soon he will realize how good he is, and when he does, look out.
Jameilen Jones (6'2, Boston College High) - Jones is a talented guard with good size and great quickness. He has an exceptional crossover which allows him to get to the rim with ease. He's a talent with exceptional upside and we expect to hear lots more about him. Jones needs to improve his outside stroke. winter 2011 evaluation - Jones was an effective and efficient player for BC High when we saw as he makes most of his plays around the basket. If Jones is going to continue to grow as a basketball player he must move his game away from the basket.
Demitry Lewis (5'8", Charlestown High School) - Lewis is an explosive point guard who gets where he wants to go and can finish around the rim. He also has exceptional point guard skills as he continuously finds the open man.
Jesse Maresca (6'0", Wachusett Regional High School) – Maresca is a very good catch and shoot threat who understands the game and makes good decisions with the basketball.
Brice McCallister (6'1", East Longmeadow High School) – McCallister has made huge improvements over the last few months, and because of his physical tools, his upside is promising. His upside is immediately evident as he has the physical tools to become an exceptional player.
Colin Richey (6'0", Whitinsville Christian) - Richey is an extremely efficient point guard who has an excellent understanding of the game. We really like him because he is the type of player that makes everybody on his team better. Sometime Richey is unselfish to a fault. Richey needs to become a better offensive threat by improving his three point stroke and pull-up.
Kamari Robinson (6'4", Springfield Central) – Robinson boasts a strong frame with good explosion in both his leaping ability and first step. He can elevate over the pack to grab rebounds from the guard position. He also is effective in pushing the ball up the floor himself, and can both finish and distribute the basketball.
Jaquille Taylor (6'8", Cambridge, Rindge & Latin) – Taylor is a star in the making. He is another young prospect in this class that has a whole lot of upside. He is currently 6'8" tall with extremely long arms and quick feet. As his body continues to develop, he is going to end up with all the physical tools he’ll need to be a division 1 basketball player. His motor is also impressive as Taylor is very active on both ends of the court, flying around and getting his hands on a lot of balls. Taylor need to work on his skill set and become a more effective scorer around the basket. winter 2011 Evaluation - Taylor is an improved player from last year and seems to be in great shape. He is learning how to play the game. There are few left-handed players with his combination of size, athleticism, and youth, and this makes him a division 1 prospect. The question for Taylor is what position he will play in college. He's a center rigth now, but his body make up and pesonality make him better served as a step away four-man. Taylor would still benefit significantly from improving his range and working on his ability to put the ball to the floor.
Jared Terell (6'2", Weymouth High School) - Terrell is a long athletic wing player who is very effective in the open court. Terrell showed us that he is a more than effective rebounder for his size, and more impressively, he knows how to push the basketball after he hauls it in. Terrell needs to continue his offensive skills in the half court. - winter 2011 evaluation - Terrell body is even better as the shophomore has a great basketball body as he his long and well cut up. Terrell is extremely athletic and can make a highlight real off of one game. When we saw him, he showed us on four different occasions that he can soar way above the rim and slam it home. Terrell also showed us that he has some game from the perimeter as he can put it on the floor and that he as a good midrange game with some impressive fade away pull-ups. Terell's game still needs improvement in the half court and he needs to improve his shooting stroke which is a bit flat and extend his shooting range. Having said that, he is quite a talent.
Cornelius Tyson (6'1", Springfield Central High School) – The Springfield Central floor general has a tremendous presence and charisma at the point and is an instinctive playmaker with a great feel for the game. His handle is smooth and efficient, his court vision outstanding, and his composure and decision making off the charts. Combine that with a good understanding of when to distribute the ball and when to attack, and a good basketball body we can see why this young man is going to be a division 1 point guard prospect. Tyson could use some work on his jumper which is a bit inconsistent.
Noah Vonleh, (6'7", Haverhill High School) - Vonleh, who just turned 15 years old in August, has the greatest upside of any basketball player in New England. Vonleh is long and athletic and his body has a long way to go. Vonleh can literally play all five positions on the basketball court. He can guard opposing teams’ tallest player and he can also take the ball up the court. Vonleh has an impressive moves off the dribble that allows him to get to the rim effectively. He has made much improvement is his shot and will need to continue to improve in that area. winter 2011 evaluation - Vonleh is the best basketball prospect we have seen in a high school basketball uniform in the last 25 years of covering High School basketball. Vonleh is likely the most improved basketball player in New England. Vonleh is all of 6’7” and has grown a couple of inches since the beginning of the summer. Added to that, his body is starting to fill in, and his athleticism and skill level are off the charts. At 6’7”, his ability to handle the basketball like a guard makes him a huge threat whenever he has the basketball in his hands. Vonleh has also shown a better understanding of the game as some of the passes he has made this young season demonstrate his growth as a basketball player. Vonleh’s perimeter shooting has improved significantly, but it is still an area that needs more improvement.
Class of 2014
Liam Bruno (6'0", Newton North) - Bruno is a tough and hard nose guard that gets after it on both ends of the floor. Bruno understands the game and knows how to put himself in positions to score.
Shane Farley (6'2", Freshman guard, Burlington) - Farley showed us that he is a player of the future as he is an athletic guard with skill. On his first offensive opportunity of the evening, the Freshman had an excellent crossover to a sweet looking pull-up that was all net. He also showed us a quick first step as he beat his defender off the dribble before finding an open teammate. Maybe the most impressive thing about Farley is the fact that he has the mindset of an upperclassman and not a Freshman. He's clearly not afraid to put it up. The future is bright for this young man.
Brendan Miller (6'2", North Andover H.S.) - Miller is an athletic guard that walks and runs on the balls of his feet. His hops are big time and thus he is an exciting prospect. He's still not a polished ball handler or shooter. But, if his skills can catch up to his athleticsm, he could be a force to wrecken with in the future.
Freddie Oliveira (6'3", West Roxbury H.S.) - Oliveira is a talented southpaw that has length and athleticism. Oliveira is very active and moves well without the basketball.
Darien Smith (6'1", West Roxbury H.S.) - Smith is a talented and versatile player. He has a nice stroke from the perimeter, but is also very effective at going inside and banging with the big guys. Smith is also an effective rebounder, can lead transition, and can pass the basketball.