2018 Rankings Anounced in All 6 States
Updated 2018 rankings begin to roll out today with the release of all six New England states.
The lists are small, and intentionally so, since only half of their high school career is now complete and the time when prospects really begin to separate themselves is now only just beginning.
The exception is the state of Massachusetts, which possesses tremendous depth in the rising junior class relative to the rest of the region, along with plenty of star power. Cormac Ryan, who made his ESPN 60 debut last week, settles in as the top prospect in the class followed by two more national names in A.J. Reeves and Nate Laszewski, who both already hold multiple high-major scholarship offers. David Duke and Arashma Parks round out the top five while Ethan Wright is the top ranked prospect in the MIAA.
Putnam Science guard Eric Ayala is the the top ranked prospect in the state of Connecticut and it wasn't especially close as he followed up a big first season in the prep ranks with an even bigger spring and summer on the travel circuit, culminating with a championship at the Under Armour Association in a game in which Ayala was perhaps the best player on the floor. Darnell Brodie and Nelson Boachie-Yiadom round out the top three while Sacred Heart guard Raheem Solomon and Fairfield Prep forward John Kelly are the top ranked prospects in the CIAC.
Another state with an undisputed #1 was Rhode Island where Cole Swider has distinguished himself as a high-major prospect who only continues to improve. One of the purest shooters in New England, Swider is far from a one trick pony. He's continued to grow and also gotten more fluid and athletic. Meanwhile Tyrone Weeks checks in as the second ranked player in the state, and #1 overall in the RIIL, following a summer in which he opened some eyes.
Vermont is similar to Rhode Island in that it is a state sometimes dominated by one powerhouse prep school and so it shouldn't be a surprise that Vermont Academy again hosts the top ranked player. Sebastijan Skoko earns that title while Elliot Nelson represents the best the VPA has to offer. Skoko is another player who stood out this summer, first by totally transforming his body and then being that much more dangerous as a result. Alas, his spot at the top is likely only temporary until his new teammate, Simisola Shittu, becomes eligible later this fall.
If Vermont is a state dominated by one prep school, New Hampshire is a state dominated by several. The 2018 class is no different where, at least at the top of the class, there is a substantial gap between the best in the prep ranks and the best in the NHIAA. A pair of point guards lead the way right now in Tilton's Marcus Zegarowski and New Hampton's Shandon Brown, both of whom are skilled and proven floor generals, while Holderness wing Philmon Gebrewhit checks in at #3 as he continues to improve at a steady rate.
The state of Maine has a strong prep school tradition of their own, but right now the local products are more than holding their own. While many of the state's best are still under the radar beyond Maine's borders, up north the likes of Portland's Terion Moss, George Stevens' Taylor Schildroth and Chevrous' Jesse Matthews are already well known players.
Stay tuned to the New England Recruiting Report tomorrow as we announce the composite top 30 in New England's rising junior class of 2018.