Posted On: 01/20/18 9:05 PM
Five Takeaways: Vashon (Mo.)- Topeka West (Kan.)
TOPEKA, Kan. — Vashon, the No. 1 ranked team in Missouri Class 4, got a tough test from Topeka West and held on to capture theTopeka Invitational championship game as the Wolverines knocked off West with a 40-35 win at Highland Park.
Vashon (12-2) was led 2020 wing Cam’Ron Fletcher who scored 13, while Topeka West 2018 guard Korion Carr led the Chargers with 13 points as well.
Here, Prep Hoops takes a look at five things that stood out about the contest.
West takes the air of the ball
Topeka West came into Saturday’s championship game with a game plan to run its offense, be patient and look for good shots. The end result was a 17-16 halftime score and a pace that slowed to a crawl. All that wouldn’t have been possible without playing defense, rebounding and making getting back on defense a point of emphasis. Vashon had just 17 points at the 4:10 mark of the third quarter as Topeka West’s zone defense had them flummoxed throughout much of the contest.
Vashon a contender, but young
The Wolverines were hit hard last season with graduation and also lost 6’8 2018 wing player Joe Reece to transfer and this year’s roster does not feature a single senior. Vashon has a group of players that are still getting acclimated with each other and feature depth, youth and several future Division I players. That group is probably led by Mario McKinney, who recently picked up an offer from Illinois. McKinney struggled on Saturday to get things going as he did not make a field goal until a little more than two minutes remained in the game and finished with nine points.
Lost in the hype of a game that featured a host of talented players was the tough ball handling of Topeka West guard Korbin Kido. A 5’9 2019 guard, Kido didn’t put up a lot of points, but played turnover and mistake free basketball and helped West run clock and get into its offense and frustrate Vashon.
Fletcher comes up big late
One of Missouri’s premier players in the 2020 class, Cam’ron Fletcher opened the game by scoring six of the Wolverines’ 10 first quarter points, but then went silent until the 2:05 mark of the third quarter when he knocked down a 3 out of the corner to give Vashon a 24-22 lead, its first since early in the game. A 6’7 wing player, Fletcher handles the ball, can shoot from the outside and is a tough cover in the high post. He finished with xx points to lead Vashon, including a two handed slam with 4:00 remaining in the game to give the Wolverines a 28-27 lead. Fletcher holds offers from Illinois, Kansas State, Missouri Stat and St. Louis and is drawing offers from several other programs as well.
Sutton plays big for West
Topeka West 6’2 2018 forward Kendall Sutton had several big moments at the defensive end of the court as he blocked several shots and led the Chargers with seven rebounds. He also converted a free throw with five minutes remaining in the game for the first points by either team in the fourth quarter to break a 24-24 tie and give West a 25-24 lead.