SRC - Lasting Impressions
As we look back and reflect on the 2018 Scholar Roundball Classic, nothing will be more memorable than Chris Ledlum’s 51-point explosion on Sunday afternoon, setting both an event and NMH record for most points in a single game.
While Ledlum was certainly at the top of the list, there were a couple of other already committed prospects who stood out including his future teammate at Harvard Idan Tretout, who continues to take his game to new levels, and New Hampton point guard Tyson Walker, who is an absolute steal for Northeastern, not because he’s going to put up gaudy individual numbers in the CAA, but because he’ll impact winning immediately and in ways that surpass what a stat sheet can show. Exeter post-graduate Jordan Jones was another as he showed a beautiful, pure release from behind the arc and proved Cornell was ahead of the curve for scooping him up early.
There were a handful of unsigned seniors who all showed well this weekend including Andover’s Brenton Mills, Canterbury’s Bryan Powell, Cushing’s Kyle Murphy, Millbrook’s Jayden Reaves, Marianapolis’ Jared Ullstrom, NMH’s Greg Dolan, Avon’s Ciaran Sandy, and Choate’s Andrew Kenny. There were a select few though that went above and beyond:
Tautvydas Kupstas, Perkiomen – After making the bus ride from Pennsylvania on Saturday, Perkiomen came close to scoring an upset that evening as they battled NMH tight for 39 minutes. Kupstas spearheaded that effort as the Lithuanian native knocked down 8 threes for 31 points. It wasn’t just about getting hot with his jumper though, it was about his competitiveness and the physical capability to impact a high-level game.
Jordan Minor, Brimmer & May – The Gators are a buzzer beater gone wrong from coming out of the Gates with a 4-1 record and Minor is the only upperclassmen in the starting line-up. While the youngsters have undeniably stepped-up, Minor’s motor, consistency, and downright productivity has led the way and he’s benefitted because of it, landing a recent offer from Southern New Hampshire.
Nate Karren, Pomfret – A post-graduate big man from California, Karren was virtually unheard of locally before Friday night. While his team wasn’t able to come up with the win, he showed a skill-set and feel for the game that is extremely rare for his size. With a long list of D1 suitors following his progress, and a longer list of D2’s and D3’s hoping to get a steal, he’ll be a popular man for the next three months.
Enoch Cheeks had been putting up huge numbers to start the season with KUA, and he did more of the same in both games this weekend. While Cheeks’ aggressiveness and athleticism were hardly a surprise, the progression of his skill-set was, as he was more of a threat to knock down rhythm threes and even rising up above the defense to fire pull-ups.
Equally impressive was Master’s junior Cairo McCrory who dropped 35 points against NMH on Sunday. While the numbers were impressive, the mindset was even more so. NMH broke the game open in the second half and Ledlum was in the midst of breaking records. It would have been easy to give in, especially for a team missing a pair of senior starters, but McCrory refused to and so his team followed suit.
New Hampton was dominant on Sunday and got everyone involved to the point where no one was going to put up huge individual numbers but Dyondre Dominguez again led the way in the scoring column, which has been par for the course through the first few weeks of the season as he’s definitely made a statement with his maturity and the consistency of his production.
There were also a couple of juniors who were showing signs of definite ascension. First year Cheshire Academy guard Asa Beyah has already added a division I offer since his arrival while Vermont native Kam Farris is making a quick transition to the NEPSAC at Tabor Academy and looks like a prospect who is bound to see his recruitment rise in the upcoming weeks and months.
No one had a bigger performance than Rivers sophomore Camaron Tongue who topped 30 on Friday night showing a great touch, floor spacing ability, and footwork to match. Holderness guard Muhamed Kante, St. George’s guard Dominic Mello, Williston Northampton big man Maleek McNeil, and Brimmer & May forward Gianni Thompson were equally impressive.
There were others, who weren’t necessarily as productive, but screamed of their long-term potential. Milton Academy jumbo-wing Casey Simmons and Suffield Academy big man Micawber Etienne tops among them. Neither guy is anywhere near polished yet. In fact, they’re both only in the infant stages of their development but their tools are off the charts. That isn’t a guarantee they’ll live up to them, but they have every opportunity to evolve at a rapid rate in the coming years. Loomis wing Nate Santos is somewhere in between. He’s a little more mature physically and already has a polished skill set, but nonetheless still has lots to learn as he progresses towards a potentially very bright future.