Omaha is hosting one of the top events in the Midwest this weekend with the Midwest Live Omaha tournament hosting teams from the eight neighboring states in an excellent first weekend showcase.
The Headliner: The main division of the 17u tournament is what will draw most of the attention. It’s a collection of teams from Nebraska, Iowa, South Dakota, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Kansas, Indiana, and Missouri coming together for a strong weekend.
Minnesota will have 43 Hoops who has only played one game so far (the previous event they played in was cancelled after a game because of weather), the Twin Cities Pirates playing in their first event, the best three Minnesota Heat teams, and the second Minnesota Fury team. Heat Nelson is currently ranked 10th in Minnesota, Fury Kaupa is ranked 11, Heat MacDonald 13th, and Heat Henderson is ranked 15th. The Twin Cities Pirates are likely the most talented team of Minnesota players in this event but all the squads are strong.
South Dakota Attack makes the drive south to play in the event and defend past success. The Attack squad has the most talent from the South Dakota area plus BBA Force will be playing in the 17s top event from South Dakota. Also in Omaha is the Indy Heat EYBL squad from the 16u level along with another Indy Heat 17u team (Indy Heat Red).
As one of the neighboring states it only makes good sense that Iowa is well represented in Omaha. The Cornsharks, Iowa Dynasty, Iowa Pump N Run, Iowa Dynasty, Showtimes Hoopers, SW Iowa Select, and the Kingdom Hoops teams are all playing. As far as Nebraska goes, the second and third teams from the Omaha Crusaders are in Midwest Live as is Lincoln Supreme, NDA, and HHA. Throw in the KC Spurs and KC Premiere, Missouri Flight, and the Wisconsin Bluebirds.
It’s 32 teams in the top division and then there are another 12 teams in the second division. There are another 32 teams in the 16u top division.
The Talent. Who will be in Omaha from South Dakota and Minnesota? Here is a list of quality players at the 17u level to keep a close eye on:
- Cornell Richardson (5-10, guard, 2020, Osseo) of 43 Hoops. Cornell was the point guard of a state tournament team at Osseo this year.
- Luke Paulson (6-0, guard, Wayzata) of Fury Kaupa. Luke is a double figure scorer and a solid defender from a quality program.
- Miles Mendes (6-4, forward, Farmington) of Fury Kaupa. Miles is a strong player with agility that has the size to defend many different players.
- Mark Richelsen (6-4, forward, Providence Academy) of Fury Kaupa. Mark has been the pulling guard getting buckets for his school for three years now.
- Sam Schwartz (6-4, wing, White Bear Lake) of Heat MacDonald. Sam scored 16-17 a game this winter and has several MIACs and some scholarship teams interested.
- Adam Williams (6-2, shooting guard, Princeton) of Heat MacDonald. Adam scored 16 a game this winter on a good team, he’s a shooter to find.
- Logan Benson (6’5, forward, Ellsworth) of Heat MacDonald. Logan is a double figure averaging scorer from Wisconsin
- Jeremy Beckler (6’8, power forward, WBL) of Heat Henderson. Scored 19 a game this winter scoring in several different ways.
- Joey Ganley (6’4, forward, Breck) of Heat Henderson. Joey was the off ball active scorer that put up a dozen a game for Breck.
- Marshall Holland (6-5, small forward, Coon Rapids) of Heat Henderson. Marshall gave his team 13 points and seven rebounds against a tough NW Suburban schedule.
- Alex Larson (6-7, power forward, East Ridge) of Heat Henderson. Alex put up seven points and five rebounds playing behind two D1 players.
- Jared Rainey (6-0, PG, Maple Grove) of Heat Nelson. Rainey led Maple Grove to state leading his team in scoring and assists.
- Ricky Eason (5-11, SG, Centennial) of Heat Nelson. Ricky shot the ball so well that everyone in the state knows they need to find him now.
- Tyler Baribeau (6-6, PF, Mesabi East) of Heat Nelson. A player that we have expectations for after watching him play well a year ago.
- Camden Bialas (6-8, C, Parker) of SD Attack. Bialas is one of the better big man prospects in South Dakota’s junior group
- Sawyer Schultz (6-3, PF, Bridewater-Emery) of SD Attack. Sawyer was the Class B Player of the year in SD and has many D2s following him close.
- Noah Freidel (6-3, SG, Tea Area) of SD Attack. Noah scored 26 plus points a game this year and is a first team all state player with scholarship calls.
- Gavin Schipper (6-3, SG, SF Christian) of SD Attack. Gavin is one of the best shooters in the state of South Dakota
- Mitchell Goodbary (6-5, PF, SF Christian) of SD Attack. Another SD all state level player on the Attack, Goodbary put up 13/7 this winter.
- Drew Cole (6-5, forward, Brookings) of SD Attack. Skilled forward with agility and some range.
- Tommy Chatman (6-3, guard, Park Center) of TC Pirates. Chatman is a smooth, skilled player that is about as efficient as they come playing both spots.
- Carter Henry (6-8, PF, BOLD) of TC Pirates. Carter will be one of the most explosive players at this event in terms blocks, boards, and finishes.
- Karsten Broadley (6-6, forward, Fosston) of TC Pirates. Broadley is an agile forward that owns an NSIC offer and scored 19 a game this winter
- Ray Mitchell (6-4, wing, Blaine, 2018) of TC Pirates. Mitchell had a fantastic senior year developing as a scorer and now wants to prove what he is able to do.