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Posted On: 01/14/18 6:00 AM
On Saturday night we were able to see the #4 2020 prospect in the state Geneseo small forward Isaiah Rivera as his high school squad traveled to Morris. In this Scouting Spotlight: Isaiah Rivera we break down how the potential high major prospect played in this game.
Rivera stands at 6’4” with a solid build. He isn’t a freak athlete, but a solid one that knows how to get the most out of his physical abilities. Long arms and short area quickness.
As a scorer in this game Rivera relied mostly on his ability to get to the rim and the charity stripe. One thing that impressed me was his aptitude to make tough layups. Some think that it is easy to make layups through contact, but it is an art for certain players. He has that knack. Ability to take a bump at the rim and finish. Got to the charity stripe at a solid rate in this game and helped put the contest away with his free throw shooting late. Rivera is a prospect that can take weaker defenders into the post and make them pay with quick post ups including one great baseline spin in this contest. Early in the game a lot of his points came off his defense getting steals and taking them the other way for points. Also caught an alley-oop in the open floor. Jump shot wasn’t his biggest weapon in this game. He only took a few hitting a key pull up three late that gave his team the lead for good. From seeing Rivera tons in other settings we know he is a reliable mid-range shooter that can stretch to three on occasion.
This is one of his strengths. In some ways he is like a point forward with the ball in his hands. Excellent decision maker finding teammates in the half court and transition for assists. He has a feel for the game and a high basketball IQ. Only had one poor pass in this game which resulted in a turnover.
Rivera rebounds well for his position. On the high school level he should rebound at the clip he does simply because he is one of the bigger and stronger players on the floor. Grabbed two clutch rebounds late one on the offensive end on a missed free throw with 30 seconds left. The other a defensive one where he was also fouled.
This is an area that when we first evaluated him last spring concerned us a bit and he has made great strides. Like I mentioned above he isn’t going to wow you with his foot speed or athleticism. He has learned how to be a crafty wing defender that uses his hands. Time and time again in this game his defensive instincts showed through getting steals and deflections. Active hands swiping for the ball. Early in the game he started off with back to back steals that he finished at the other end. He did pick up several cheap fouls in this game which caused him to have to sit out the entire second quarter as he had three fouls at the end of the first. We will continue to closely monitor his progress as a defender against quality competition this summer.
We had him for 22 points, 5 rebounds, 3 assists, and 5 steals in three quarters of play due to foul trouble.
Rivera has established himself as one of the premier wings in the 2020 class in the state of Illinois. Currently he sits as the #4 overall prospect and #2 small forward. He is a prospect that mid-major plus schools should be offering now and high majors need to heavily track this spring during the evaluation periods with Quad City Elite.