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Posted On: 04/5/18 12:00 PM
It’s been three years now since we began evaluating the class of 2019, and while some standouts are still yet to surface, others are just hitting their stride. After strong junior seasons, these eight guys have put themselves firmly on our map, and have made high debuts in this latest installment of rankings.
Issa Samake (Grand View Christian) – No.6
This is the highest debut we can remember any player making in any class since we strated Prep Hoops Iowa in 2014. And if you saw Samake down at the state tournament in March, you’d see why. He’s the most athletic leaper in Iowa, and his skill-set is underrated. He’s got a big summer ahead with All Iowa Attack 17U.
Derek Emilifeonwu (Valley) — No. 41
He came to Valley from Australia, Canberra to be exact, and he had to sit out the first semester. Valley struggled during that time. But as soon as the big 6-foot-3 wing was inserted into the lineup, the Tigers started winning, and advanced all the way to the 4A semifinals. He was the glue guy.
Adam Jackson (Hoover) — No. 52
The second-leading scorer on a Hoover squad that was in Class 4A’s top-5 for a good chunk of the season, it was a no-brainer to have Jackson inserted into the rankings. And after seeing his performance against Valley in a narrow Substate loss, we knew he was certainly one of the best 75 players in his class, easily.
Dylan Miller (Mason City) — No. 68
He was the 12th best 4A scorer among juniors last season, and did so on some pretty decent shooting. Mason City may not have lit the world on fire this past winter, but Miller certainly proved he’s at least a top-100 guy in his class.
Keaton Mitchell (Wapello ) — No. 72
This 6’7 Wapello big-man makes a high debut after showcasing himself at the state tourney in March. Wapello may have made an early exit, but Mitchell was their best player in defeat, going for 15 points, 11 rebounds and three blocks in a quarterfinal loss to Treynor.
Quinn Vesey (Indianola) — No. 75
When he hung a career-high 42 points against Ankeny back in December, Vesey was planted firmly on or radar. He cooled down a bit after that, but still finished the season with some very decent numbers; 13.3 points, 3.1 assists, 1.3 steals and 4.1 rebounds per game.
Trevor Paulsen (Marion) — No. 76
Any time a 3A guy on a state tourney team can lead his squad in assists, rebounds, steals and blocks, he’s doing something noteworthy. Paulsen did just that, and was the second-leading scorer (10.6) on a Marion team that competed in the 3A state tourney this past season.
Levi Lukes (South Winneshiek) — No. 82
The numbers speak volumes here, Lukes erupted his junior season for the Warriors, and averaged 21.6 points (on 51 percent shooting). That’s good enough to be the eighth-best scorer — regardless of class — in 2019.