Username or Email Address
Posted On: 05/25/18 2:46 PM
It appears the Lions of Linn-Mar could be a squad to again contend for a state tourney berth next season. Most everyone knows about rising-senior Trey Hutcheson, he averaged 18 points last season as a junior, and was tremendous in this tourney while playing for Martin Brothers, even picking up an Air Force offer during the weekend. But then there’s rising-juniors Dylan Decklever and John Steffen, both play in the Iowa Mavericks organization and were outstanding last weekend, and both seem poised to have potentially breakout junior seasons with the Lions next year.
2021 in Good Shape
We have spent a lot of time this spring, especially in May, evaluating Iowa’s class of 2021. And we’re pleased to say, that it’s shaping up to be a very strong one. There’s no one sure-fire top guy, like there has tended to be in other class’s, but there’s a strong pool of candidates that will make up a top-20 when the rankings are released this fall. The 15U squads were chock-full of rising-sophomore talent at Kings of the Court. Michael Duax, Dylan Johnson, Chase Courbat, Alec Brown, Nathaniel Mueller, Payton Sandfort, Reid Grant, Wyatt Heston, Jadin Johnson, just to name a few, all made very strong cases to be highly ranked.
Martin Brothers/Kingdom Hoops
Both the 15U and 17U title game featured the top teams from Kingdom Hoops and Martin Brothers, and they split, with MB taking the 15U title and KH taking the 17u crown. The Iowa Mavericks had some good showings, especially their top 16U squad (which narrowly lost to Martin Bros in the semis), but it was clear that Martin Bros and Kingdom Hoops were the alpha programs at this event. Martin Brothers have a 15U squad that looks like it might be the best in Iowa. They throttled a very good Kingdom Hoops Elite 15U squad in the final, 78-61. Kingdom Hoops, though, got some revenge in the 17U final when their Elite-Mosley squad — with just seven guys — took down a Martin Bros squad with three, maybe more, D1 prospects on the roster. Creston’s Kylan Smallwood led the charge in that one, he scored 16 points in the win, including two 3-balls to start the game.
Regular Season Spillover
There was some serious competitiveness going on at Kingdom Courts last weekend, and the two most contentious battles looked to be spillovers from possible regular season rivalries. Pleasant Valley and North Scott played twice last season, splitting the season series with one win a apiece. Carter Duwa and Cortaviaus Selaes were the starting point guards for those teams, which were two of the best in Iowa, and they were going after each-other hard during Iowa Prep Red vs Iowa Mavericks-Gosnell 17U quarterfinal match. It was plain to see, there was a little more going on there than simply a chance to play in an AAU semifinal. Hosea Treadwell and Dillon Carlson may not play in the same conference, but they do both play in the CIML. Last season, Treadwell’s Hoover Huskies and Carlson’s Ankeny Hawks played the first game of the season, Hoover won 59-57. Carlson didn’t not play in that game, he was ineligible for the first part of the season, but based upon the technical fouls assessed and Carlson’s bloody lip during the first Martin Bros 17U and Kingdom Hoops-Mosley game, you can bet these two will remember each-other for next season’s game.
D1 Talent Abound
Trey Hutcheson showed that he’s fully taken on the role of sharpshooting wing. Cole Henry was displaying his ability to get up and slam well above the rim, and was stepping out and shooting the 3-ball fluidly, also passing like a guard. Derek Krogmann looked dominant in the 17U final, despite his Martin Bros team taking the L. James Betz, with his immense length and bounce, was making a cameo with Kingdom Hoops last weekend, and he just looks different than the others; UNI smartly nabbed him up early. Trayvon Williams was absent on Championship Sunday during his team’s title run, but on Saturday was showing why he’s an unstoppable slasher. Noah Hart, who recently nabbed an Air Force offer, put together a Keeside Elite squad for the weekend, and was able to recruit rangy and versatile D1 Minnesota forward Japannah Kellogg and Iowa’s top-ranked 2020 Xavier Foster, that in addition to 6’7 Waukee teammate Dylan Jones. After a rocky start (they were walloped by a solid Iowa Cornsharks 17U squad), the supremely talented unit bounced back and won the 17U gold division; they finished the weekend 5-1. Had they not lost to ‘Sharks off the bat, they might have won the whole thing.
What we’re saying is: this tourney is awesome, it always is, and it was full of Iowa’s top prospects.