Posted On: 06/16/18 10:54 AM
For legendary Mater head coach Marcos “Shakey” Rodriguez, Class of 2019 point guard George Becceri has been the engine that’s propelled a youth-laden team.
As it is often explained, Mater tends to go as Becceri goes. It’s visible as he directs traffic and runs the team, composed and vocal and communicative throughout. This is the sheer calming influence and veteran savvy on which the program will lean heavily next season.
In proving himself as a dynamic point guard, Becceri piloted Mater to the 2018 Palm Beach State team camp during Week II. During a thorough 76-49 mauling of Ball4Lyfe, Becceri buried timely 3-pointers to swell the spread prior to halftime. He created his shot off the dribble effectively, broke into the driving lanes, and triggered the transition attack with unbridled energy.
“He’s our point guard, he’s a senior leader and he stepped it up big tonight,” explained 6-foot-4 Class of 2019 wing Seven Ferguson, who leaked out into the open court and finished with ease.
“I feel as if it is our team next year. We’re going to have to be leaders out there on the court and call the shots.”
A confrontational shoulder to shoulder defender who knows how to facilitate and subsequently call his own number under heightened pressure, the workmanlike nature of Becceri’s play was evident.
In an environment that featured myriad lineup changes and some toying with the regular lineup, Becceri’s unwavering approach was emblematic of his bullish and rugged mentality on the floor.
There are no cupcake games in his perspective, he puts forth the same effort regardless of the opponent.
Ferguson, who entered the tournament known for his hustle and motor, displayed an improved outside touch.
Following his junior season at Mater, Ferguson was pegged as a jack of all trades type. He was initially pigeonholed as the quintessential “heart and hustle” source, a guy who isn’t particularly proficient in one area of his game but does everything required to win.
Ferguson has shed that label, developing more of a reliable shot which he’s extended beyond the arc. His vertical explosiveness has been ratcheted up a few notches, as witnessed by his open court finishing at Palm Beach State camp.
With the onus on Ferguson to lead by example, expect several double double performances out of him next season.
Paralleling the production of Ferguson and Becceri has been consistency in the unrequired work.
“Seven is always asking for extra work and George is the first guy in the weight room,” explained Five time NBA championship trainer Tony Falce, who has worked with high-caliber athletes such as Chris ‘Birdman’ Andersen and Tyler Johnson and molded 26 NBA players since 2013.
“Both of them are understanding the importance of performance. Having them as leaders in the weight room really sets the standards for our underclassmen.”
Mater’s evolving youth movement has yielded results in 6-foot-4 Class of 2022 guard Malik Reneau. He displayed a smooth left-handed stroke from beyond the arc and a unique skill set throughout the tournament.