Posted On: 02/14/18 2:30 PM
The 3rd set of Hidden Gems honors is marked by prospects with size and versatility. They have all been vital pieces to their teams and are starting to get noticed.
Donaven Hairston (Milton)- Hairston came into this season with a chip on his shoulder and it has paid off. He has been an important part of the strong Milton backcourt and has made sure people know who he is now. Hairston has a unique mid-range and in-between game that can surprise other teams, hitting tough floaters and pull-ups. He has been more aggressive in slashing and drawing contact at the basket as well. One of his best qualities is his defensive ability; he is a headache for opposing ball-handlers and will rack up 5+ steals in a game with ease. He was an All-Region selection and is looking to help the Eagles advance in the playoffs as they take on Mountain View this Saturday.
Luke Chism (Dawson Christian)- Chism has been putting up big numbers since the start of the season and has not let up at any point along the way. It seems like every night he is exploding for 25+ points and solid rebounding and assist totals. His size as a lead guard makes him a difficult matchup for most teams, especially in the GICAA. He has continued to add to his game as the year has progressed and can hurt opponents in a variety of ways. His performance this season has earned him some notoriety throughout the state and it will be interesting to see what type of schools track him this spring.
Carter Oesterling (Westminster)- Oesterling had to fight through multiple injuries this winter, but that did not stop him from putting together a solid junior campaign. He was essentially a positionless player for the Wildcats, playing all over the court and doing so nicely. Oesterling handled the ball frequently and excelled in transition, but had no issue doing the dirty work either. He’d get physical inside and grab a bunch of rebounds both offensively and defensively, which was huge for a small Wildcat team. Oesterling was an All-Region performer and should carry some momentum into the spring. I expect him to become a target for multiple high academic Division 3 programs.
Brady Spence (Alexander)- Spence has continued his strong play since the last Hidden Gems update, and will have a chance to build on it even further in the state playoffs. He is now averaging 10.3 PPG, 9 RPG, and 5 BPG on 62% shooting. These numbers are big boosts from his sophomore season, as he has improved greatly. Spence provides a mobile force in the paint who doesn’t require many touches to be effective on offense and frightens opponents with his defensive ability. If he keeps on this track, he will have a host of Division 1 schools coming after him on the travel circuit.
Armani Harris (Newton)- Like Spence, Harris has also maintained a high-level of play since the last update. He was recently selected 3rd Team All-Region in a region that is loaded with outstanding players. This honor is even more impressive because of the other players on Newton’s team. He won’t get 20 shots a game, but the versatile forward makes his mark with effort and active play. His athleticism and energy to go with it is a great boost for the Rams. Harris brings his hard hat to each game and he will be an important piece as Newton looks to make a run at the state championship.