Posted On: 04/8/18 7:00 PM
PrepHoopsIllinois was once again at the Rock Spring Classic in Madison, Wisconsin on Sunday. We look here at the top performers from the last day of the event!
PG Chris Roberts (Young & Reckless 17U)
Roberts had another phenomenal day! In their game against Team Rose he used his elite speed to go coast to coast on multiple occasions. He has a burst with the ball rarely seen. Takes straight line drives to rim where he finishes with incredibly athletic layups. Mixes in some runners. Passed it better on Sunday than he did on Saturday. Roberts had 18 points.
PG Artese Stapleton (Young & Reckless 17U)
Stapleton is a thin and wiry point guard that we were high on after his play last July. He struggled a bit with injuries and inconsistency during the high school season at Kenwood, but he definitely has D1 ability. Stapleton is a slick handling lead guard that is shifty with the ball in his hands. Gets in the lane when he wants driving to the cup for layups and finishes through contact despite his thin build. Solid passer in the open floor pushing it up the court. Just an average perimeter shooter. He had 20 points.
PG Kejuan Clements (Team Rose 17U)
Clements is a powerful point guard that is really developing as a distributor. He started that growth during the high school season at Simeon and that has carried over to grassroots season. The strong and stocky lead guard made crisp passes in both the half court and transition. He got in the lane and kicked to shooters. Also drilled a pair of threes. Not a lot of lift on his jumper. It’s almost like a set shot. Clements had 14 points.
SG Dajuan Gordon (Team Rose 17U)
Gordon impressed me with how well he rebounded. The 6’4” rangy wing flied in on a consistent basis from the perimeter using his quickness for offensive rebound put backs. Most assertive I have seen him on the glass. Also brought it defensively with a LeBron block. Offensively he plays above the rim catching an alley oop and scoring in a variety of ways at the rim. He has a nose for the basketball. Gordon had 16 points.
SG Myles Baker (Team Rose 17U)
Baker is the last of the Team Rose trifecta! The Whitney Young standout was consistent throughout the entire event. On Sunday he was lights out shooting it from three. Drilled them both pulling up and off the catch. Seems to gained a lot of confidence after a strong junior season with the Dolphins. The top 10 prospect moves well without the ball, has improved as a passer, and is a capable defender. Finished with a team high 17 points.
SF Christian Shumate (Chicago Lockdown 16U)
Shumate is uber bouncy 6’5” small forward that’s game lives off his athleticism and ability to get to the rim. The Plainfield East 2020 prospect has long strides attacking off the bounce and is explosive in the lane finishing with spin moves or just going right after the rim. Really like how aggressive he is taking the ball to the cup. Quick and assertive moves. Efficient on his takes. Play so hard! Shumate needs to improve his jump shot to round out his offensive game. Did hit one three, but that isn’t a strength in his game at this stage. Projects well defensively with his length, toughness, and anticipation. He had 17 points.
PG Alex Wood (Young & Reckless 16U)
This Normal U-High point guard intrigued us when we saw him last summer with his leadership and ability to get others involved. His game continues to grow and evolve. Wood has become a more consistent threat from the perimeter shooting from three. Quick and concise release. Shoots one dribble pull ups with ease. Wood is a plus passer that plays with a high IQ especially in the half court. He had 16 points.
SG Johnny Close (Young & Reckless 16U)
This Rockford Boylan wing is a rangy two guard that can flat out shoot the basketball! Close was on fire from three in the game we saw him play. He is always ready to shoot it when spotting up on the perimeter. Lightning quick release from three. He has deep range on his shot as well. More than just a shooter he is a sneaky athlete that can score on drives when defenders close too quickly. Close had 16 points.
SG Ramean Hinton (Team Rose 16U)
Hinton was one of the biggest stock boosters of the event. The power wing scorer plays with a high motor and tenacity that he will do whatever he has to do for his team to win. The 2020 prospect brought his team back against Chicago Lockdown for a win by doing just that. His jump shot has improved tremendously and he drills them pulling up from all over the floor. Great elevation off the floor so it is difficult for opponents to contest the shot. He also connected off the catch. Tough driving through traffic with his strength. Took on the challenge to shut down Fundamental U’s best player and top 10 prospect Jayden Johnson and he did that as well. Hinton finished with 22 points. A lot of helium heading into the live periods.
SF Connor Kochera (Fundamental U 16U)
Kochera stands at 6’4” from St. Viator. The wing is just a tough and gritty small forward that is efficient with his touches around the hoop. He gets on the offensive glass for put backs. When taking his man off the dribble he is most effective on straight line drives. Sound passer. He had 18 points.
SG Uchenna Egekeze (Fundamental U 16U)
Egekeze is the younger brother of former Huntley and Belmont standout Amanze Egekeze. They are different players. This 2020 prospect is more of a wing with a long and angular frame at 6’3”. He has a nose for the basketball always being in the right spot to make a play. Has a bit of a funky release, but drilled two threes. Moves well without the ball. Gets on the glass and is a sound passer. Great glue guy with some upside!