Patella Earns D1 Offer
Despite a big junior season at Lenox High School, a small school in Western Massachusetts, Bailey Patella was a relative unknown coming into the grassroots season.
He started to make a name for himself this spring with the Boston Warriors but it wasn’t until a strong showing at the Elite 75 College Showcase in June that he landed his first full scholarship offer from Assumption.
That performance turned out to be a springboard for a big month of July. He averaged 25 points per game for the Warriors at the BasketBull Summer Championships, including 31 in a win over USAD. He matched that average a week later when the Warriors traveled to Pennsylvania for the Hoop Group Summer Classic, scoring 98 points (including 11 dunks) over the course of four games and going for 33 in a match-up against Team Final Black and Towson pledge Zane Martin. He finished the month by averaging 23 points, 7 rebounds, 4 assists and 3 steals per game at AAU nationals in Louisville, leading the Warriors to a 6-1 record and a 6th place finish in nation.
When the month of July finally came to an end, Patella had added new scholarship offers from Southern Connecticut as well as Binghamton, who became the first division I school to offer the budding 6-foot-5 wing.
“Being from Lenox, Bailey has come two-plus hours, back and forth, to practice, each week for the past two years,” Warriors director Mark Papas said. “and with the injuries we had in the spring, we had Bailey play the stretch-four to cover many power forwards and centers. He never complained. He just went out and worked.”
The return of Eric Sellew to the line-up proved to be very important not just for the Warriors success as a team, but also for Patella individually. Sellew, who has recruiting interest ranging from the Ivy League to the NESCAC, provided them with a real post presence and constant double-double threat, which allowed Patella to move back to the wing, albeit as a more versatile defender and strong rebounder.
Patella was also aided by the continued development of Jake Kakar, who became one of the most dangerous shot-makers around, as well as the addition of power guard Sebastijian Skoko, who headlined the Warriors’ u16 team all spring.
With that core in place and other contributors like Isaiah Laurent and Ryan Reagan both stepping up with more consistency, Patella wasn’t just free to return to his natural position, he was also free from being the sole focus of opposing defenses.
“When we were fully healthy, we put Bailey back at his natural position and he was virtually uncoverable this July,” Papas said. “With his skills, wing span and desire, his best basketball is ahead of him.”