Posted On: 02/6/18 6:07 PM
The 23rd annual Nike Extravaganza is one of the premier showcase atmosphere’s in all of high school basketball.
The 2018 edition delivered the same results, for the most part, bringing together many of Southern California’s top programs, along with two out of state programs, for the two-day, 14-game event.
Prep Hoops So-Cal was in attendance for all three sessions of Nike Extravaganza and this piece dives in to the best shooters from the event.
Nic Lipovic, Capistrano Valley
The Cougars senior could have been placed in the “under the radar seniors” piece, but his performance at Nike X, along with many other games throughout his career, earned him the right to be in the best shooters category. Lipovic has one of the smoothest 3-point strokes you’ll find in Southern California. He’s always balanced, never changes his mechanics, gets high, lofting arc on his shot and it even fell softly on the rigid Mater Dei rims. Lipovic went 4 of 9 from 3-point range against Westchester.
Spencer Freedman, Mater Dei
The Harvard-bound senior connected on six total 3-pointers in the Monarchs two games — two against Heritage Christian in limited minutes and four against Chino Hills — and he’s long been one of the premier shooters in the state. Freedman possesses the ideal shooting mechanics and muscle memory to repeat that form no matter how many minutes he’s played. Freedman has a super quick release, deep range, and holds his form through the ball tickling the twine.
Josh Adoh, St. John Bosco
Adoh has come a long way as a 3-point shooter after being known mostly as an athletic slasher and finisher around the basket a season ago. The 6-foot-3 junior connected on 4 of 7 from deep in a win over Los Alamitos Saturday morning, leading the team in scoring with 15 points. Two of the most notable parts of Adoh’s shooting – and what’s helped him become a consistent 3-point shot — are the high location of his release point and the timing of when he releases at the peak of his lift.
Fernando Gomez, St. John Bosco
Unlike his teammate Adoh, Gomez has always been known as a threat to beat you from beyond the arc. The 6-foot-2 junior has one of the greenest lights in all of SoCal and his 3 of 5 effort from deep against Los Alamitos was evidence to why that is. Gomez doesn’t need much time and space to get his shot off, but if there is a defender fast enough to close out to him, he has one of the more effective shot fakes in the game to get himself a clean look.
Clark Slajchert, Oak Park
Slajchert was not only one of the best 3-point shooters at Nike X, but also one of the better mid-range pull-up guys, as well. The 6-foot sophomore is shooting 41 percent from 3-point range this season and 49 percent overall. Slajchert went 3 of 7 from 3-point range in Oak Park’s win over Colony, scoring 17 points overall with a combination of catch-and-shoot and off the bounce triples and his patented leaning mid-range jumper.
Noah Fernando, Heritage Christian
We touched on Fernando in our “Top Friday Perfomers” piece and it wouldn’t be right to not include him among the best shooters at the event. Fernando hit six 3-pointers in a loss to Mater Dei on Friday and he’s another guy with a quick trigger and unlimited range. The 6-foot-3 junior has 70 made 3’s on the season and is shooting 40 percent from deep overall.
Ryan Evans, Santa Margarita
Evans didn’t shoot it particularly well in Santa Margarita’s win over Corona Centennial, finishing 3 of 10 from 3-point range, but that might have been due to some fatigue from him winning the inaugural Nike X 3-point shooting contest. Evans was the last man standing among a group of top notch shooters that competed throughout the weekend.