Hoop Mountain Fall Classic - 2013 Recap
Hoop Mountain's annual fall classic continued to be a must attend event for division II and III college coaches, who lined the walls at Mass Premier Courts to get a view of the action. Here are some of the players that stood out:
Max Risch, Williston-Northampton (MA)- Risch is the prototypical wing player with size and athleticism. He often finishes high above the rim, but has shown a greatly improved ability to hit his jumper on a semi-consistent basis. As he continues to improve skillwise, don’t be surprised if he starts racking up offers this winter.
Zuri Pavlin, Brewster Academy (NH)- Left-hander who can play multiple positions, which of course makes him a valuable commodity as a college prospect. Pavlin certainly has the ability to score in the post and hold his own on the glass, but he also has the athleticism to score from the wing off the dribble and defend most small forwards he’ll go up against.
Pete Weston, Choate (CT)- Weston can score in literally every way possible: he hits the outside or mid-range shot, can score off the dribble, and has a knack for scoring against other guards when he gets the opportunity to score on the post. He has a scrappy style of game defensively on the glass, almost always giving a play 100% effort.
Isaiah Nelsen, North Andover (MA)- Nelsen immediately stands out as a college prospect because of his versatility for a 6’6 forward. He can step out and hit the mid-range jumper, rebounds consistently, and has nice footwork down in the post. He’ll be a force this year for North Andover, especially if he can consistently produce in high quantities offensively.
Agyei Gregory, St. Andrew’s (RI)- Gregory can score in bunches, but his niche is the fact that he will give just as much effort defensively as he does offensively. He pressured the ball, played impressive help defense, and was very active on the defensive glass.
Alex Hall, Brewster Academy (NH)- Solid combo guard who takes care of the ball and minimizes mistakes. Hall’s niche as a player is the very fact that he can play both positions, and as he continues to improve his one-on-one scoring, he can make himself into a go-to type of scorer.
Sean Mcnally, Hanover (MA)- Mcnally looked pretty comfortable with the ball in his hands out on the wing. He plays to his strengths and knows how to pick his shots wisely; for a 6’5 wing who is an inside-out scorer, he’s an undervalued talent.
Andrew Baron, St. Bernard’s (MA)- Baron is another skilled big who excels when he plays aggressively. What he may not have in bounce, he makes up for in superb footwork and a seasoned understanding of how to use head fakes around the basket.
Sam Fradin, Lawrence Academy (MA)- Scorer who clearly plays his best basketball at a very fast pace. Fradin was able to limit his turnovers and make quick, difficult decisions that often resulted in a basket for his team. An unselfish player.
Felix Riascos, Franklin Delano (NY)- Felix stoodout initially because of his tremendous athletic ability, but he continued to make his presence felt all night around the rim. He didn’t take a whole lot of jumpshots, and he didn’t really have to, because defenders were intimidated by him as he used his explosive physicality to get to the rim.
Owen Murphy, Plymouth North (MA)- Murphy was one of the better rebounding bigs at the whole event. He seems to have an impressive nose for the ball, and while he won’t necessarily score in bunches, he is that solid post player that you know exactly what you’re going to get from him.
Nikola Vukosavovic, St. Andrew’s (RI)- Still a raw big man, but Nikola could blossom this year at St. Andrew’s and make himself into a strong college prospect. He plays hard on the glass and defends the post well, never giving up position in the paint without a fight.
Tim Reale, St. Andrew’s (RI)- Reale is a playmaking guard who excels with the ball in his hands in transition. He still needs some polish on his offensive game, especially in developing consistency on his outside shot, but the inside scoring is there for him to make himself a tough player to stop.
Joe Flannery, Taft (CT)- Flannery’s scoring ability has been well documented, but what was the most impressive aspect of his game on Friday was his upper body strength. He has creative footwork and sees the floor well, but that added strength has done wonders for Flannery’s confidence, especially in terms of scoring.
Jahlil Askew, Maloney (CT)- He has the strong, athletic build of a scorer, as well as the fearless mentality to absorb contact, but Askew was one of the better guards at the whole event in terms of pressuring the ball. In a showcase environment most players give into the temptation to let up on defense, he didn’t.
David Stewart, Madison Park (MA)- Stewart is a hard working post player who excels because of his upper body strength. He has moments of impressive athleticism, but his technique and hard-working tendencies make him stand out as a college prospect at the power forward position.
David Varoli, Salisbury(CT)- He’s a quick guard who is at his best when he gets the opportunity to distribute in the open floor. Varoli showed off a nice handle at Hoop Mountain, as well as an improved jumper that definitely has more consistency to it.
Alex Sugarman, Concord-Carlisle (MA)--In keeping with the theme of bigs who dominated, Sugarman is a 6’7 forward who rebounds in bunches and can be counted on to carry the load for a team on the glass. His one-on-one offensive game is still a work-in-progress, but he showed that at times he isn’t afraid to take some contact if it means getting a good shot around the rim.
Will Cartwright, Nokomis (ME)- Quick big man who showed the ability to create his own shot. Cartwright isn’t going to always rebound in bunches, but he has the versatility on offense to play 3 positions and defensively he uses his long arms to get in the heads of attacking opposing players.
David St. Peter, Cheshire Academy (CT) – One of the most dominant post players at the event, St. Peter created a lot of buzz among the college coaches. He’s in excellent shape, ran the floor extremely well, and was crafty inside the paint.
Others who impressed:
Will Tavares, Bishop Hendricken(RI)- Shooting guard who has the killer mentality and athletic ability to be a go-to scorer.
Curtis Howe, Avon Old Farms(CT)- Point guard who can score in a variety of ways, but showed an improved skill: setting up easy shots and creating for other scorers.
Quinton Dale, Taft(CT)- Able shooter who did a good job of creating for others. Dale could be slotted at the two or three position, and his ability as a rebounder make him that much more valuable.
John Zimmerman, Medfield(MA)-Scoring guard who at times got to the cup at will and finished at a high rate.
Patrick Wallace, Brewster Academy(NH)-Another multitalented guard for Brewster, Wallace has no problem letting a long three fly, but can also score off the dribble and hit shots inside.
Jared Neves, St. Paul’s(NH)- A strong power forward who has no fear of contact, he loves to take contact and finish inside.
Jaleel Bell, Wayland(MA)- Dynamic athlete who has the ability to wear many different hats for a team, whether it be stopper, scorer, shooter, or rebounder.
Rudolfs Arnicans, Brewster Academy(NH)- Talented guard who is still building confidence in his offensive game. All the tools are there for him to be a solid college prospect.
Reed Bixby, Amherst Regional (MA) – Six-foot-seven big man who runs the floor well and hit some shots inside. He showed a high IQ by playing good help defense and using textbook boxout mechanics.
Derek Collins, North Andover (MA) – Hard-nosed 6'2 guard who is an underrated rebounder and can also defend three positions. Collins is a highly capable shooter who also looks to absorb contact going to the rim.
John Crawley, St. Bernard's (MA) – Versatile 6'4 wing who can be trusted to handle the ball or do a good job of defending some forwards. Crawley hit several long threes, and he showed that he was one of the better off-the-dribble shooters at the whole event.
Jake Loewen, Hudson-Crafty scorer who does a great job of finishing around the rim. Has a quick trigger on his outside jumpshot.