Hoop Mountain SW1 - Day 2 Recap
Bristol, RI - On the second day of Hoop Mountain’s Super Week I Wednesday at Roger Williams University, the basketball games continued with unabated passion and intensity just like the day before, with the action enhanced by some personal battles; additionally, there was an impressive show out of college coaches that lined the gym’s walls.
Following are some of the highlights of the action:
In a contest involving the Pistons and the Knicks, the Pistons were led by two point guards from Pingree, Johnnie Spears and Cole Cummings. Spears continued to display an uncanny ability to combine extreme quickness with the knack to be able to see the entire open floor and find his teammates for great looks. His passing ability in transition is fun to watch, and he did a great job of executing exceptionally tough play while keeping his turnover numbers low.
As good as Spears was, the team lost very little when Cole Cummings came into the game though. Cummings is about a 5-10 point guard who also sees the floor very well and is an under-control dribbler. Cummings controlled the pace of the game with his dribble penetration, and did a great job of picking his spots to be aggressive.
There were other point guards who shined during the second day of action at Super Week I. One, notably, was Dennis Tobin of Catholic Memorial in West Roxbury. Tobin is a consummate team basketball player who is a strong ball handler and can create his own shot, as well as find open teammates for shots. When Tobin is not handling the basketball, he does a great job of spreading the floor with his ability to catch and knock down jump shots.
Another guard who impressed on Wednesday was Lone Wolf’s John Dewey. The lighting quick guard does a lot of good things on the court, the most notably being his on ball defense. He was a nightmare for opposing guards all day since Dewey relentlessly played tight, tough man-to-man defense from start to finish in every game that we saw him. Offensively, he is very athletic and uses a good handle to break defenders down and attack the rim.
The breakout guard of the day though was a young man by the name of Ryo Tawatari. Tawatari, who originally came to the U.S. last summer to do a post-graduate year but ended up not being able to because of difficulties speaking the English language, was very impressive Wednesday due to his polished skill set, great feel for the game, and fun international flair. Tawatari is an accomplished lead guard who even started for the Japanese U18 National Team a couple years back. Tawatari, who is still even considering going to college as soon as this fall, had many coaches in the gym talking about his future plans for the majority of the day.
Sophomore Zain Thompson from Bethlehem, N.Y., showed his ability to push the basketball and find the open man, as did Misiboye Jeanneau-Mubialz who is a graduate student from Quebec, Canada. Jeanneau-Mubialz also showed he can penetrate and dish, or pull up for a a jump shot which he is capable of making. At the very least, Jeanneau-Mubialz is a matchup nightmare for opponents. Another point guard to watch is Wabissa Bebe of North Andover High School; Bebe is a strong on-the-ball defender, and does a good job of playing within the team concept offensively.
Bebe’s teammate, Javon Taylor who attends Beaver Country Day School, is a 6-3 forward who showed the ability to play strong interior defense, switching correctly off picks, blocking shots and getting some deflections. Kenny Cox is about a 6-0 forward who displayed a knack to run the floor and rebound.
Teaming up with Dewey for the Lone Wolf squad was Brendan OShea, a classic two-guard who certainly displayed the ability to fill in at point guard if needed. For the majority of the day O’Shea was playing the two-guard though and did a good job of it. He is a deadly three-point shooter and is able to create his own shot off of a very effective shot fake and/or pivot series. O’Shea’s teammate, Marcus Willingham, is a big who battled very hard for his team all day. Willingham has a good back to the basket game, but also ran the floor well and made some nice plays in transition. He was very solid, and had college coaches talking especially since Willingham will be attending the Tilton School in the fall.
Another big who certainly impressed some of the coaches in attendance was Alex Peters, a 6-4 forward who is up from Alabama. Peters is just a shot blocker and great defender who seems to find the player in the paint with the basketball, and can alter shots as well as reject them. A similar player to Peters is James McCullagh, another big who has traveled to the camp from the Long Island borough of New York. McCullagh is a smart basketball player who does a lot of different things on the court, foremost, blocking shots and rebounding.
A player being intensely watched during this Super Week I is Anthony Green, a 6-8 center who is attending North Quincy High School as a senior in the fall. Green is skilled and did a good job of finishing with authority around the rim(he had several dunks throughout the day), but he is a player whose best basketball is still definitely ahead of him once he starts to learn the game more and plays tougher. If he can do those two things, he could turn into a very intriguing prospect to scholarship schools.
Lastly, the team that impressed the most today was the squad from the city known as Metro Boston. Behind the great play of Mike Hogervorst, Miles Wright, and Jameilen Jones, Metro Boston was firing on all cylinders throughout the scrimmages. Also big for them was he shot making abilities of Malcolm Brent who was able to keep the floor spread which opened up opportunities for many guards and bigs alike down low.
It’s all about the competition at Hoop Mountain! Stay tuned.