ZG Mass Madness - Event Recap
Zero Gravity invaded southeastern Massachusetts for their annual Mass Madness tournament. With the fall circuit set to conclude over the next couple weeks, several older players were able to catch the attention of the NERR staff. However, the key takeaway from this weekend may be the emergence of young players who are positioned to be key players on the grassroots level for years to come.
BABC stayed poised under pressure due to the veteran leadership of Brycen Goodine & Mitch Doherty, and were able to take the American Championship in the Varsity Division as a result. The Cobras road into the finals of the National Division against a feisty GB Gladiators squad that had several key wins in pool play. The Cobras were able to hang on for a one-point victory, 59-58, to take the National Championship. Team Mass survived Starland Supernova by two points to capture the International Championship.
The 10th grade BABC team, although short-handed, hung on for a close win over RI Rivals for the American Championship. Your 10th grade National Champions are the MV Pride, who have improved every week and should be a team to keep tabs on next weekend and into the spring. Paper City convincingly defeated the competition to grab the International Championship.
Behind a team of very talented players that will grow together and be a team to reckon with, BABC captured the American Championship in the 9th grade division to make it a clean sweep. Blazers Doherty squeaked out a one-point win for the National Championship, and Brockton Reign Elite continued their strong play with a big win in the International Championship game.
The following individual players stood out throughout the weekend:
Chris Herren Jr (BABC, 2019)- Herren's improved quickness makes him an even more dangerous offensive player. Along with his jumper, he is a legitimate threat to attack the basket on every possession with either hand. His steady demeanor calms his teammates, but he knows when he needs to be in attack mode.
Paul Mahon (Boston Warriors Select, 2018)- With several college coaches following him throughout the weekend, Mahon did not back down from one challenge all weekend. He attacks the basket with reckless abandon, and has the upper body strength to take the contact & finish through bigger players. His basketball IQ is high, as well, as he burned his defender for several backdoor cuts for easy baskets.
Shea Doherty (BABC, 2021)- The younger brother of Mitch & cousin of Chris, Shea is another Doherty that shows a lot of promise. This Doherty is another willing passer, but can stroke it from deep and elevate in traffic. Long & gangly at the moment, he shows the raw ability to be another productive Doherty down the road, albeit maybe in a different way from both of his elder relatives.
Matt Constant (Team Saints, 2021)- Known for his steadiness & hard work, Constant is a tough point guard who battled through an injury early on Saturday to make big plays off the bounce for Team Saints throughout the weekend. He also grabbed several tough rebounds that many points guards would not attempt to corral.
Jeff Hill (AASA, 2021)- Hill is a guard to keep an eye on moving forward. With a lanky build, Hill has room to grow physically. His vision as a point guard really impressed, as he sees the whole floor when he drives to the basket. He made several hook passes with one hand that demonstrated his ability to read which teammates are open because of the help side defenders' position protecting against his drive.
Justin Vander Baan (BV Chaos, 2020)- The 6'10 big man built off his impressive Elite 75 Academic Experience NY earlier this fall & played very well over the weekend. His skill is improving, but he makes a concentrated effort to box out his opponent (who is usually the biggest player on the other team).
John West (BABC, 2020)- John West is a big young man for a high school sophomore. That makes his footwork, feel & activity even more impressive. With broad shoulders & room to still fill out, West has taken a big step in the past six months & should be a big factor for BABC with his efficient rebounding and ability to finish inside moving forward.
Michael Perry (Expressions, 2019)- The incoming Tabor Academy guard will bring a tough attitude to his team in the NEPSAC this upcoming winter. He is noticeably stronger, and is able to take hits on his way to the basket better than he has in the past.
Justin Fitzpatrick (Evolution, 2020)- The long forward has dramatically improved his jumper, as there is much less motion in it right now. This will enable him to release the ball quicker, a trait that will not only be valuable in the near future, but at the next level, as well.
Matteo Whelton (BABC, 2020)- A Florida native & current student-athlete at Philips Andover, the lefty guard gets his shot off quickly & gets his feet set quickly without sacrificing his deadly accuracy on his jumper. He is a heady player who has the potential to be a big factor for Phillips Andover & BABC in the near future.
Doug Alves (Bay State Jaguards, 2018)- The lefty point guard shot the basketball very well, and showed a good hesitation dribble from his right hand to his left hand in order to get in the paint. He is as solid as they come, and is looking to have a monster year for Bridgewater-Raynham in the MIAA this upcoming winter.
Tedrick Wilcox (RI Elite, 2019)- A wing with good potential, Wilcox elevated in traffic for a thunderous dunk that brought the house down in Hanover. His shot has improved, as well, so he can get it off before his defender has a chance to get his hand up on his closeout.
Marcus Azore (DB Gladiators, 2018)- Azore is a small & wirey guard who can elevate in traffic. He has a very quick second jump on the boards, so if defenses do not box him out he will reek havoc on the glass!
Darius Hyppolite (Bay State Jaguars, 2018)- The point guard showed a good change-of-speed dribble to go along with a variety of creative finishing moves inside the paint. He knows how to maneuver his body around (and sometimes through) defenders once he attacks the basket.
Stephan Michal (Mass Attack, 2021)- The freshman is a great passer with a good feel for the flow of the game. He does not over-dribble & wants to get his teammates involved.
Kyler Bosse (Evolution, 2019)- The lefty forward gets to his spot on the court effectively. From there, he showed a soft touch on his midrange jumper and his floater.
Michael Allsop (DB Gladiators, 2018)- The forward from Easton impressed in several ways. Catching the ball in the high post against a zone, he showed good footwork and patience and was able to make the correct read. He can finish through contact inside, and is not afraid to push he ball in transition off of a defensive rebound.