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Posted On: 06/23/18 9:42 PM
Saturday was a packed lineup of high-level games all around the University of Minnesota campus for the Gopher Team Camp. U of M coaches and players scattered the gorgeous Athlete’s Village gyms and the Pavillion as well for a full slate of high school squads running it back here in June.
Many top talents were on display Saturday and NHR was on hand to see the standouts.
The name to associate with Rochester John Marshall is Matthew Hurt, no doubts about that. He threw out more than 40 in the JM win over MoKan in the morning. We all know his game, but what we need to know next is the role players and their ability to contribute in positive ways rather than just staying afloat. Multiple perimeter players created turnovers for the Rockets and moved the ball quickly and efficiently which led to high percentage looks for the JM scoring punch. I’m excited to see how they develop into the season as a team.
Ben Carlson’s strength to finish through contact is something to be in awe of. He needs just one dribble to step through defenses and cut through contesting hands. He owned the offensive glass against Totino-Grace in the absence of Courtney and Kendall Brown. An assortment of youngsters stepped up to give lots of help in the form of Brody Kriesel (6-6 PF), Kendall Blue (6-4 SF) and Zac Thomas (6-5 PF). The trio provided offense inside and out, hounding the boards and working with maximum effort.
Around this time in June, high school teams playing together need a little while to get back to their winter chemistry. That was evident today in every team I saw but East Ridge put it together quick, even with a younger group getting heavy minutes.
Totino-Grace graduated their entire starting lineup from last season. That’s a lot of box score and experience to replace; luckily there are three bench guys that I saw today who are stepping into big go-to roles. Riley Burger, Eric Krieger and Carter Weierke will need to be huge pieces and producers for the Eagles this season to hold the workload in the Northwest Suburban. Burger is a lengthy 6-5 wing who can do everything very solidly. Krieger is a sharpshooting guard with sneaky ups and he impressed me on the glass today. Weierke is a rising sophomore who has great size at 6-4 and is your perfect jack of all trades, able to handle and rebound and shoot. He was clutch in the overtime win against St. Paul Johnson.
Got a chance to check out one of the more exciting small schools today in Brooklyn Center, coming off a 4th place finish in AA this year. The three stars of their game against North St. Paul were usual: Lu’Cye Patterson controlled pace and dropped highlight fast break dishes, Adreone Sprinkles was the finishing end of those passes in efficient fashion with his 6-4 football tight end frame, and Amahn Decker robbed the smaller Polar frontcourt of rebounds with his quick jump and broad shoulders. The Centaurs are a top 10 squad once again and will have another gauntlet of a playoff run in section 5AA. They impressed me today with their energy and speed.
Extra Team Camp Tidbits