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Posted On: 12/31/17 1:58 AM
12-27-17 & 12-28-17. Paint Branch HS. 14121 Old Columbia Pike, Burtonsville, MD. 20866
This was the first Walter Hardy Holiday Hoopfest Memorial Tournament. In years past the Coach Hardy (right) was a longtime Paint Branch Head Basketball Coach for 17 years. He was named All Net Coach of the Year in 2000 after the Panthers won the 2000 MD 3A State Title, until he left to become Athletic Director at nearby John F Kennedy HS for 2 years. This May Coach Hardy was hired to become AD at Montgomery County Sherwood HS where he began his duties on July 1. Tragically Coach Walter passed away suddenly this September . He was beloved in Montgomery County, at Paint Branch & he was very close to current Head Coach Chris Bohlen. This was the 5th year of the Walter Hardy Holiday Classic & it was a great one. Coach Bohlen who has courageously battled a recent illness did a superb job in managing the Tournament. He was the pre game & game announcer, awarded the trophies, & performed so many duties behind the scenes devoting countless hours. The Walter Hardy Tournament was very well played in a fantastic family atmosphere with great games, & great sportsmanship in the beautiful Paint Branch Gymnasium. The players & coaches for both teams were fantastic & we are looking forward to next years Walter Hardy Holiday Hoopfest Tournament at Paint Branch HS.
The 2 day tournament featured 8 teams which were Prince Georges County representatives Bowie HS & Potomac HS, from Howard County River Hill, & Host Montgomery County schools Gaithersburg, John F Kennedy, Paint Branch, Richard Montgomery & Sherwood. The 8 teams were divided into 2 divisions, the Burgundy & Gold. This article covers the Gold Division which includes the Bowie Bulldogs, Gaithersburg Trojans, Kennedy Cavaliers & the host Paint Branch Panthers.
12-27-17 GAMES :
John F Kennedy Cavaliers 77 Bowie Bulldogs 60
This match up featured Montgomery County 4A John F Kennedy HS vs Prince Georges County 4A Bowie HS. The Cavaliers entered the game with a 1-4 record which is not par for 17 year Head Kennedy Coach Diallo Nelson who is well recognized by his piers as an outstanding Coach. Last season Kennedy recorded a 21-4 record & were one of the best teams in MOCO & the DC DMV. Kennedy lost several key starters & I did not know what to expect. Versus Bowie, Coach Nelson utilized a 1-3-1 zone & several gimmick & trap defenses concentrating on the guard heavy Bowie Bulldogs with his very athletic, quick & taller Cavaliers. Kennedy gained a double digit lead early & were never challenged. Kennedy improved to 2-4 while Bowie slipped to 2-3. Despite their record I currently rate the Cavaliers as top MOCO 4A contender & the Montgomery County surprise team of the year after their win. Key Cavalier players are a pair of athletic & powerful guards in 6’2′ 2018 CG #1 Jayson Nyamey, & 6’2″ 2018 Wheaton transfer guard #2 Detrick Ntam (right). 6’1″ 2019 WG Myles Lewis is a knockdown 3 point shooter who compliments Jayson & Detrick very well. Myles scored 14 points while 6’5″ 2018 C/F Habaccuc Regnis added 10 points & 14 boards. & 6’5″ 2018 F Nick Johnson scored 11 & grabbed 6 boards. Jayson Nyamey who leads Kennedy in scoring @ 17.8 ppg played a fantastic all around game & scored 9. Detrick Ntam played a superb game scoring 18 points & collecting 13 rebounds. 6’0″ senior guard Joel Kamden played very well scoring 13 .Jayson Nyamey, Detrick Ntam, Joel Kamden, Nick Johnson, & Habaccuc Regnis are all excellent 2018 college prospects who we will be talking to this January
Bowie was led by 2019 6’1″ CG sharpshooter Jordan Harris (left) who knocked down 5 treys while 6’0″ 2019 CG Jordan Mitchell added 10. 6’1″ 2020 CG Kyrie Freeman-Davis scored 7 & 6’0″ 2018 PG Isaiah Burke added 5 points. 6’5″ 2018 F Rasheed Idowu scored 4
Paint Branch Panthers 103 Gaithersburg Trojans 75
Gaithersburg entered the MOCO 4A showdown with a 6-0 record while Paint Branch was 5-1 with their only loss a 1 pointer to BCC. The very long & athletic Panthers took the lead early & cruised the rest of the game setting up their Championship game vs Kennedy on Thursday night.
6’2″ 2018 & very underrated PG Kevin Neal (right) totaled 18 points & 6’1.5″ 2021 freshmen phenom Jao Ituka totaled 18 & 6’4″fellow 2021 F Jordan Hawkins scored 16 with 2 treys. 6’0″ 2018 G Jordan Graham added 9. Jao Ituka’s unreal dunk is in the video just below I will be writing articles for Kevin tomorrow, Jao this week & both Jordans the following week.
The Panthers were led by a spectacular 41 point outburst by 5’10” 2019 CG Richard Dudley which included 5 treys & he is pictured on the left. 6’5″ 2018 F/G Xavier Reaves scored 18 with 2 treys & grabbed 11 rebounds. 6’5″ 2018 F Kevin Yomba added 8. 6’3″ 2018 WG Bobby Miller scored 8 points, but he is still battling a bad ankle sprain. 6’2″ 2019 CG Marley Sume played very well scoring 12. Richard Dudley & Xavier make a very strong case to enter our 2019 & 2018 rankings in January respectively. I rate Paint Branch the top MOCO 4A team, but this month the Panthers will face Springbrook & Kennedy twice. Montgomery County basketball is very deep & on the rise.
Bowie Bulldogs 62 Gaithersburg Trojans 59
Bowie defeated Gaithersburg in a very close & well played game to earn 3rd place in the Gold Division consolation game.
6’0″ senior PG Isaiah Burke played a very strong game for Bowie & scored 16 points. 2021 6’1″ CG Kyree Freeman Davis added 9 points, 6’0″‘ 2019 CG Jordan Harris totaled 8 & 6’0″ 2019 PG/CG Jordan Mitchell chipped in with 8. Bowie improved to 3-3. Bowie will host Eleanor Roosevelt on 1-5-18 in a key PG 4A game & Prep Hoops plans to attend. In the very near future I will be writing a Recruiting Report for Jordan Harris
6’2″ 2018 PG Kevin Neal scored 17 points for the Trojans & was very impressive in both his games. 6’4″ 2021 F Jordan Hawkins hit 5 treys & totaled 17 points while fellow freshmen standout Jao Ituku scored 9. 6’0″ 2018 G Jordan Graham added 8 points.
Isaiah Burke (pictured right with outstanding 2020 G Kyrie Freeman-Davis) & Jordan Hawkins (left) were each awarded All Tournament honors.
Paint Branch Panthers 79 Kennedy Cavaliers 74
This was a very close contest & which I used to gauge Kennedy HS after their big win vs Bowie on Wednesday. Paint Branch has a ten plus deep bench & most athletic team in MOCO. Kennedy entered the Walter Hardy Holiday Hoopfest with a 1-4 record which included several close losses. During the Kennedy vs Bowie contest the Cavaliers showed they are team to be reckoned with & a legitimate MOCO 4A contender. The Cavaliers have nice depth & size & I rank them in the MOCO 4A top 5.
In the Gold Division Championship game Paint Branch led by 1 half 38-37. In the beginning of the 3rd quarter Jayson Nyamey suffered a facial injury & missed the remainder of the game. Jayson had scored 10 1st half points to lead Kennedy. Paint Branch led 58-46 at the end of the 3rd, but Kennedy stormed back & took the lead. However, Paint Branch bounced back & won 79-74. Head Kennedy Coach Diallo Nelson was very proud of his team and the same holds true for Paint Branch Head Coach Chris Bohlen whose Panthers improved to 6-1. On 1-2-18 Paint Branch will host Kennedy in a fantastic rematch.
This game featured excellent players from both teams. 5’11” 2019 CG Richard Dudley (wearing #5 in the team championship photo & letting his teammates get the spotlight) scored 39 which included 13-15 free throws & 4 treys which earned him MVP honors. Xavier Reaves is pictured right wearing his all tournament award & holding Paint Branch Championship Trophy. Xavier had his 2nd straight double double with 11 points, 11 steals, 6 rebounds & 6 assists. Richard & Xavier are 2 of the DC DMVs more underrated players. 6’3″ WG Bobby Miller is still dealing with his ankle & only played a few minutes. When Bobby comes back he will take the Panthers to another level. 2020 6’5″ F Jordan Alphonso had a splendid game with 16 points double digit rebounds, & several blocks. Jordan is another superb 2020 very under the radar player with huge upside. I will be writing an article for Jordan in the next 2 weeks. 2021 5’11 PG Juan Bell scored 6 & he is on our freshmen watch list. 6’1″ 2019 G Mishi Etuaful is a starter & added 6 points. 6’5″ 2018 F Kevin Yomba & 6’2″ CG Marley Sume are vary valuable & played very well defensively. Recruiting Reports will be written for Kevin & Marley in the near future. I rate Richard Dudley, Xavier Reaves & Bobby Miller as top 10 MOCO players.. However, in January I will update the rankings according to the players graduation year. Jordan Alphoso is one of the most impressive players for 2020 while several other Paint Banach players could enter the rankings.
Kennedy received superb performances from Jayson Nyamey, Detrick Ntam, Myles Lewis, Nick Johnson, Joel Kamden & Habaccuc Regnis. I will be updating their statistics asap . Kennedy is emerging as a top 5 MOCO 4A team & in January play #1 Paint Branch twice, top 5 Clarksburg, while Sherwood can be dangerous. At least 4 Cavaliers will enter my undated MOCO Rankings this January.
Walter Hardy Holiday Hoopfest All Tourney Team : Davis Long (Sherwood) Daryn Alexander (RM) Isiah Burke(Bowie) Jordan Hawkins(G’Burg) Jaden Martin (River Hill) Detrick Ntam(Kennedy) Emmanuel Doby(Potomac) Jason Newman (Potomac) Xavier Reaves (Paint Branch) Richard Dudley (Paint Branch)