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Posted On: 01/3/18 8:06 AM
On Tuesday night I stopped by St. John’s to see them host WCAC rival, Paul VI. Both teams returned to the DMV Tuesday night after participating in out of town holiday tournaments last week. St. John’s got off to a really good start in the first half and had a halftime lead of 28-21 but that would end up being the biggest lead they ever had. The upperclassmen and another big time performance from 2021 Trevor Keels of Paul VI got the Panthers off to a great start in the 3rd quarter and they would end up winning 62-57.
Here are the 10 best!
MVP: 2019 Anthony Harris (Paul VI)
Im giving my MVP award to Anthony Harris of PVI as he finished with 13 points, 4 rebounds and a couple of steals. He really provided a spark for Paul VI in the second half as they found themselves down at halftime after a not so good offensive performance in the first half. Harris was scoring from mid range and got to the rim with his physical style of play. He had two steals that led to back to back buckets that shifted the momentum back to Paul VI at a crucial part of the game.
Plays Of The Game: 2019 Anthony Harris’ Steals leads to points
Midway thru the 3rd quarter Anthony Harris gave Paul VI their first lead of the game after two consecutive steals that led to five points. The first steal came when St. John’s had just gotten the ball past half court and Harris got in the passing lane and got a steal that lead to a fast break bucket. Right after that play, Paul VI put the press on, Harris stole the inbound pass and connected on a layup with the foul. After a very quick 5-0 run by Harris, Paul VI took their first lead of the game and never looked back. These plays were by far the biggest momentum shifter in the game.
Best Offensive Performance: 2021 Trevor Keels (Paul VI)
It sure is scary how well Keels is playing as he is only a freshman and already contributing on a big time stage for Paul VI. Keels finished with 15 points in the game for Paul VI. Six of his points came from deep, and another seven came from him getting to the free throw line. He can use his big body to allow him to draw contact around the rim. I am very impressed with his spot up jumper. He has shown throughout the season that he can score in a variety of ways. He picked up his first offer a few weeks ago from Wake Forest.
Best Defensive Performance: 2018 Richard Njoku (St. John’s)
Paul VI was not able to do a whole lot around the rim mainly because of Navy commit, Richard Njoku. Njoku is a big presence down low for St. John’s as he brings good size and length around the rim. Paul VI is limited on size so that really helped Njoku control his way in the paint. He had a few big time blocks at the rim on the Paul VI guards.
Best Guy Off The Bench: 2021 Avery Ford (Paul VI)
Avery either came into the game really late in the 3rd quarter or early 4th quarter but what a burst he gave his team late in the game. He had six crucial points for Paul VI right around the basket and finished with two rebounds. I do not think many people were expecting him to have this type of role late in the game but he scored some of the games biggest points when nobody was really expecting it.
Best Intangibles: 2019 Devon Dunn (St. John’s)
Early on in the game Dunn made an amazing play that you wouldn’t see a lot of guys make. Paul VI was on a fast break and Devon deflects the ball, and saves it from going out of bounds with a behind the back pass to a teammate and St. John’s ends up getting the ball back. Dunn did not get into the scoring book but it is the little things like this that can stand out to people. He also grabbed a few rebounds for the Cadets.
Best Under The Radar: 2020 Delonnie Hunt (St. John’s)
Talk about a guy that plays bigger than his size… Hunt stands at 5’7 while being one of the hardest playing guys on the court at all times. Hunt brings tremendous speed and quickness to the court and is already bringing a lot of vocal leadership to St. John’s. He can get to the rim in a flash, shoot from multiple areas on the court and very good at getting his teammates involved. Every game I have seen of Hunt this year, he has impressed me more and more.
Best Underclassmen: 2021 Trevor Keels (Paul VI)
Whenever Paul VI plays, Keels could very easily end up in this category. Keels was at it again last night with another great performance and he keeps on having big performances as only a freshman in high school. Like I mentioned before, Wake Forest offered a few weeks ago but this list is going to continue to get bigger as schools are just starting to learn about the 2021 stud from Fairfax.
Best Rebounder: 2018 Richard Njoku (St. John’s)
Richard had a game high in rebounds with 7 last night for St. John’s. Like I mentioned earlier, Richard mainly controlled the paint throughout the game. Navy is getting a very good post player in Njoku that can box out well to grab rebounds on both offense and defense.
Best Clutch Moment: 2020 Jeremy Roach (Paul VI)
Jeremy Roach sure did come up clutch at the end of the game right when his teammates needed him. He really did not have that big of an offensive game but at the end when it mattered he score five important points for Paul VI in the last 1:30 of the game. He sparked a 5-0 run with a very impressive drive to the basket and then a nice catch and shoot 3 for Paul VI that would end up being the game winning buckets for the Panthers. He spoke on his end game heroics, “I knew my team needed me at the end of the game, they always need me at the end of the game. Even though I was not playing my best they still look for me to make a big shot at the end of the game.”