Posted On: 01/17/18 2:40 PM
Tuesday night in Colorado Springs the two top teams in the city faced off in a CSML 5A showdown. It was an action packed game as Doherty led the entire way, but late runs put Rampart right there with a chance to steal the game. The Spartans of Doherty pulled out the victory 66-56. Doherty established themselves as the team to beat in Colorado Springs, and a threat to any team in the state.
Here are the five things to takeaway from the contest
Alijah Bates emerging as a states best
The 6’7 junior has flown under the radar early in his high school career, that is until now. Bates has a big body but has great soft touch around the rim and from the free throw line. Tuesday he ended the game with 25pts, 12 rebounds, and 3 blocks. At times Bates completely dominated the game with an inside presence on both ends. Going up against one of the states best bigs, and Hawaii University commit, Dawson Carper would seem to be a challenge but Alijah was willing and took it head on. For the entirety of the game Alijah Bates was the best player on the floor. Being on a junior, look for big things from Bates in the near future.
Rampart has strong backcourt
The Rampart Rams have a solid 1-2 punch in the back court, one of the best in the city. Senior guard Josh Kavalec is the engine for rampart. Kavalec is a quick shifty PG who got into the lane at will and finished at rim with consistency. When he got out on the break his quickness allowed him to attack the defense and get to his spots. Kavalec finished the game with 14pts shooting 45% from the field. Adding 4 assists and 4 steals shows that Kavalec has an all around game. Xavier Johnson is Ramparts second guard. Xavier has great size and strength at the guard spot which allowed him to be physical with the ball, take contact and still get to his spots. Scoring 16 points and bringing in 5 rebounds Xavier definitely made his presence known on the game. The only knock on the Rams back court is the lack of shooting from these two.
Doherty Big 3 to much
The Spartans have a three headed monster in their front court with Alijah Bates(6’7), Joe Golden(6’6) and Kyrele Benford(6’6). Doherty utilized these three very effectively getting them the ball in spots where they could all three use their specific skill sets. Golden is the all around guy for the Spartans. Everything from setting screens to even being a swing-man play maker for the Spartans, Golden was the ultimate utility tool. Benford is a long wing player with the ability score inside and outside. His size and ability to see over the defense and even bring the ball up the court at times made him a mismatch for the Rams. Bates is the big post player for Doherty. He caught the ball and finished in traffic, ran the floor, and scored with his back to the basket. Golden finished with 12pts and 11rb, Benford 14pts and 6 rebounds.
Dawson Carper still raw but has upside
7 foot tall senior center Dawson Carper has rare size and raw talent. He has a great soft touch around the rim, even hitting a couple jumpers close to the basket on Tuesday. His size was overwhelming and caused issues for Doherty at times in the paint. Overall Carper played a solid game finishing with a double-double(16pts, 12rbs). He missed a few bunnies around the rim as he is not very explosive yet, but for a 7 footer he has great feet and very soft hands. Overall the upside for Dawson carper is huge and he will be a force to recon with at Hawaii University.
Both teams need to be watched in playoffs
The Spartans and the Rams are both teams that will have an impact on the playoff scene this year. Both teams bring talent on the floor and play with a grit and will to win. A long run in the playoffs is the goal for Doherty, and Rampart is a sleeper team that will make an impact. I wouldn’t want to run into either team in the playoffs.