Posted On: 04/22/18 9:42 AM
Pieced together the most dominant half of basketball we saw in Omaha on Saturday, scoring 15 points in the first 16 minutes against Showtime Hoopers. He was simply bigger, stronger and more athletic than the opponent, and was doing nearly all of his damage near the rim. He sat out the second half with what seemed to be a minor foot issue, but should be back at it today for semifinals action against Kingdom Hoops-Mosley.
After a sluggish first half by Davidson’s Indy Heat squad, they got it going in the second half against Iowa Cornsharks Select, and Davidson was the catalyst. The Blackhawk Christian (IN) shooting guard netted 15 second half points in that blowout win, and was displaying a smooth and fluid jumper to start the half before getting to the rack by the end of it.
Jared Mattley, 6′ G (Kingdom Hoops Elite 16U)
A Papillion, Nebraska guy, Matley was the best player on a pretty good Kingdom Hoops 16 Elite unit yesterday. He’s does a little bit of everything; scores off the bounce, set-shooter, nice handles, good athlete, and is bursting with confidence when he plays.
Matt Ockey, 5’10 G (Kingdom Hoops Elite 16U)
Maybe the biggest surprise of the afternoon, Ockey doesn’t possess a ton of size and strength but he plays with moxy and savvy. His craftiness allows for him to get off looks that others his size may struggle with, and a quick release from 3 is one that’s always got a good chance to drop.
His team was down nine at the break in the 16U quarterfinals, and then Bubak lit up. A top-15 prospect in Nebraska’s 2020 class, the versatile forward notched 17 of his 22 points in the second half that game, all from within the paint. Not surprisingly, the tough combo-forward is also a standout on the gridiron
This Southern Missouri standout (Willard) threw down one of the more flashy dunks of the day, when he ended a 16U quarterfinal match against Team Iowa White with a floaty 180 flush. It wasn’t just that, though, he was all over the rim in the quarterfinal win, scoring a game-high 16 points in the win; 12 in the second half when Flight needed them most.
Already committed to play at Hargrave Military Academy, but still able to play grassroots ball, this senior wing was his usual impressive self all day yesterday. He got up and flushed a couple jams, and was using his generally bigger and more athletic frame to have his way against younger and smaller opponents. Johnson scored a game-high 18 points in a gritty quarterfinal win over NDaGym.
Probably the best all-around performance of the day, a lot of guys on this list strung together one very strong half, but Jackson was getting it done from start to finish. His handles are improving greatly, and he’s got the ball on a string now. His jumper falls from all over the floor — he canned three straight 3s at one point in the second half. Jackson’s 28 points in a quarterfinal win over KC Spurs Grey was the most we saw scored in a game on Saturday.