Boston Shootout - Event Recap
The 44th annual Boston Shootout took place this weekend at Cathedral High School and welcomed one of the best fields in years with teams from all three national sneaker circuits.
Always a very exclusive event, the Shootout is very unique in today’s world of grassroots basketball as they play only one game at a time, and Sunday’s action treated us to a series of marquee match-ups culminating with a double-header between the host club, BABC, and the New England Playaz.
BABC advanced to the finals after knocking off Wayne PAL 89-53 in the semis while the Playaz defeated the NY Jayhawks 81-70.
The finals match-up not only pitted two top local programs against one another, but two programs who have achieved national success this season as BABC, coached by longtime Boston Celtics executive Leo Papile, won Division A of the Nike EYBL and the Playaz, coach by former Celtics and Duquesne head coach John Carroll, went 8-1 during the Adidas Gauntlet regular season to qualify for the Gauntlet Finale.
BABC took control early in the final and dictated play throughout the first half, but the Playaz responded in the second, ultimately taking the lead with 5:30 left on the clock and pushing it to a two possession game with just over two minutes to play.
Bruce Brown came up big down the stretch while Tommy Mobley’s third three of the game was a late dagger as well, but BABC didn’t capture the lead until Ikenna Ndugba went to the free-throw line with just 45 seconds left in the game. The Playaz wouldn’t score again as BABC captured the championship with a 63-61 win.
Brown finished with a team high 17 points while Kevin Marfo and Robert Martin Jr. had 12 and 10 respectively on the inside. Kellan Grady scored 13 of his team high 18 points in the second half for the Playaz while A.J. Brodeur finished with 16 and Ian Sistare 10.
The Albany City Rocks finished atop the 10th grade division with a 3-1 record while BABC was just behind at 2-2. The Playaz got off to a frustrating start on Saturday but rebounded with their best performance of the weekend in a Sunday afternoon win over BABC that was served up as the undercard for the 11th grade final.
Aaron Wheeler scored a team high 17 points while Isaiah Godwin did a terrific job of taking care of the ball and distributing it from the point. Chuck Hannah and Chris Doherty were efficient on the interior while Nate Laszewski drilled threes and made good decisions on the perimeter. Garrett Stephenson was the bright spot for BABC, carving out space and making a variety of tough lay-ups.
In the 9th grade division, BABC knocked off a talented City Rocks club, led by former Virginia assistant coach Steve Seymour, to capture the championship and punctuate a perfect 3-0 weekend. A more mobile Cole Swider stood out as the team’s top prospect but it was the backcourt trio of Maurice Works, Shandon Brown and Paul Durkee that really made this team go as Works and Brown took turns making plays off the bounce while Brown and Durkee joined Swider to knock down their fair share of jumpers.