Great Lakes Classic: Underclassmen Stock-Risers

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Posted On: 12/4/17 5:31 PM

To kick off the season, we stopped by the newly remodeled gym at Cleveland Heights for the Great Lakes Classic on Saturday and Sunday. Over the twelve games, plenty of talented players from Northeast Ohio put their offseason work into action and raised their stock.

Let’s check out the list of freshmen and sophomores who stood out at the GCL (alphabetical).

Garvin Clarke (2020), 6’0” PG, Euclid

The #2 sophomore in the state continued his reputation as a strong finisher at the rim who can do it with either hand. His skills and feel for the game are so mature for a sophomore, as he understands time and score. Clarke showed progression in his game, as the pull-up jumper is looking more consistent and he’s a touch more explosive.

Jamal Cole (2020), 6’5” W/F, New Day Academy

Cole woke up an empty gym on Sunday morning with the dunk of the weekend against Kenston. Coming down the lane from the right wing, Cole soared above a defender and put it down for an and-one poster. The raw, wiry athlete also finished a spectacular running hook coming right to left.

With a few years of skill development, Cole will be an interesting combo forward prospect. Still not very fluid but is a competent ball-handler with space.

EJ Farmer (2021), 6’4” G, Lutheran East

Farmer looked like the real deal in a 21-point performance against Beachwood. A four-point play, catch-and-shoot three, and a layup in the fourth quarter closed the game. Check out yesterday’s article for more. 

Tevin Jackson (2020), 5’9” PG, St. Ignatius

Jackson looks to be the lead guard for Iggy this season. He impressed with his defensive instincts in the passing lanes, turning a few interceptions into buckets. He can finish with either hand at the basket and is sneaky athletic. His unselfishness and court vision led to a lot of open threes for Ignatius, who took advantage of John Hay’s lazy defense.

Meechie Johnson (2021), 6’0” G, Garfield Heights

Johnson, who reportedly holds offers from Ohio State and Louisville already, didn’t disappoint in his high school debut. Johnson put up 15 points and was aggressive as a catch-and-shoot threat. Johnson also shoots it extremely well off the dribble and is able to find separation with any number of crossovers. The freshman’s scoring ability opens the floor for their many scoring threats.

Jesse Laster (2020), 6’3” W, Garfield Heights

Laster sat down on defense and made it happen for the Bulldogs’ second unit. He finished with a loud 11 points, many of which came on transition dunks. He has a lot of upside as a defensive player and slasher. Flat-out competitor.