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Posted On: 12/12/17 1:57 PM
The main court at the Breakdown Tip-Off Classic gave Minnesota several excellent games and there were several excellent performances from players who didn’t win the game.
Sam Vascellaro of St Thomas. Sam is a big 6-foot-5 but his agility and ball handling skills allowed him to attack the rim for 31 points against the Osseo defense. The Orioles have solid athletes with size but none of them were able to keep Vascellaro in front of them. Even guards had trouble getting back in transition and finding a way to stop the Vascellaro attack. Sam is definitely one of the seniors to watch having a monster senior year and pushing his recruitment into a next bracket.
David Roddy of Breck. The skilled Roddy showed all summer that he can shoot from the arc and has the agility to play some small forward. In the game with Perham, Breck needed Roddy in the high post and on the low block and Roddy dominated to the point of 37 points and 11 rebounds. Roddy faced up to score, faced up to one dribble physically finish, and his passing out of the high post was excellent. Perham didn’t have the size that could do anything once Roddy turned his shoulder to bounce off the floor to the cup. David’s size and agility combination is very rare and that is why he is likely will be a major conference football standout or a basketball recruit at a few different levels.
Trent Meyer of St. Cloud Tech. The Tigers didn’t have the man power to play with Lakeville North but All CLC player Trent Meyer gave his team 17 points in defeat. Trent was at Sartell a year ago and showed this weekend why he will be able to support Tech in their run at state this winter.
Michael Jones of Woodbury. The Royals were short handed and had a terrible game with Wayzata but Jones left the gym with the respect of everyone there. Wayzata tailed Jones everywhere limited the percentages he shot from deep but Jones battled all game going at the bucket to physically score in addition to his foul shots and jumpers. What did I take from watching Jones this weekend? A new respect for his competitive fight and toughness.
Shae Mitchell of Lakeville South. The Wisconsin-Milwaukee signed forward continues to play in a mature way. The Cougars couldn’t stop Matthew Hurt but few can. Mitchell was able to put together some deflections and blocks in his play hard statistics column plus he made some tough perimeter jumpers over the length of Hurt. Mitchell made four treys and score 26 points. Lookout for South, there is something a bit different about them this year.
Jarius Cook of Park Center. The future NDSU Bison guard was the one Pirates player that could score against a quality defender (Kaden Johnson) and that could move with Jalen Suggs. Cook had an excellent first half with 20 points until he picked up fourth foul in the first half. Cook had to sit the first nine minutes of the second half and he, and his team lost all rhythm. Jarius impressed though with his 23 for the game.
Tyrell Terry of DeLaSalle. Tyrell’s ability to move the basketball is matched by few in this state. The junior guard handled comfortably against a pressuring Hopkins defense and that poise led to seven assists and numerous good shots for guys like Jamison Battle and Gabe Kalscheur. The smooth attacks from Tyrell led to some crafty finishes and his soft touch at the arc is a thing of beauty. Terry displaced defenders with his handles and overall looked every bit of a high major point guard. Nebraska, Iowa, and Butler agree as they have offered scholarships (Iowa watched the game).
Max Bjorklund of Orono. It’s odd but Max often seems like the forgotten guy and he’s still the man that is making plays at the end of guys and leading his teams (Orono and the Fury) in scoring. Max scored in transition, hit floaters, and squared up to attack guys one on one. He scored 24 against the Raiders defense marking yet another quality opponent that Bjorklund was able to total numbers against.
Odell Wilson and Tayler Johnson of Minneapolis North. Both played in the high school all star game and then a few hours after finishing the game, Wilson and Johnson jumped in the car, took the pads off, put on the basketball uniform, and both went for 20 points against Apple Valley (Tayler had 21). Johnson had an incredible throw down that you can find quickly find online somewhere. The Eagle wings had a tough time with Johnson’s athletic ability which is true for most that face him. Odell was immovable in the post as usual backing players down, turning and softly finishing. Wilson is an impressive two sport athlete who is also excellent in the classroom.