Posted On: 07/25/18 12:41 PM
Atlanta Timberwolves– The Timberwolves are coming off of a 4-2 week at Best Of The South, picking up wins over some solid competition. Jon Morgan and Austin Sloan both made the All-Tournament team, providing the squad with an active, athletic wing-forward duo that is skilled as well. PG Alex Kelehear was steady as always, controlling the game and letting things come to him with efficient outings. 2020 G Jack Kostel, another primary ball-handler along Kelehear, garnered attention with some flashy plays and slick passes. 2020 wing Joseph Staiti had two solid games against CA Pressure and the Nike Elite Stars before an ankle injury, mixing outside shots with finishes through contact inside. He didn’t get hot in either game I saw, but you expect Jordan Krueger to hit timely shots for the team this week. Adam Cottrell, Eli Burruss, and Will Allen are all capable of production off the bench; it will be a big boost if they make some solid contributions this week. 2021 PG Will Kolker and 2020 F Colin Granger will also be with the team in Orlando. Kolker is one of the more advanced guards for his age and had good moments during the 1st live period with the T-Wolves. Granger is a top forward in GA’s 2020 class and will bring an important presence inside for this group.
GA Elite Ballers– The Ballers won their bracket at Best Of The South, and although I only saw their first game of the tourney, they looked like a cohesive unit ready to make some noise. A review of Jaylen Bates’ weekend can be found here, a physical forward whose production comes from energy and activity. Guard Kalik Brooks had an impressive game offensively to start the tourney and then made a point to prove himself as a high-level perimeter defender throughout the week. D’Antaye Page didn’t have his best game to start the tourney but was key against Team GA Magic. He has an excellent mid-range game and a variety of finishes at the basket. Brandon Deravine impressed college coaches with his versatility at 6’6”, hitting three’s and slashing to the rim from the wing. Josh Johnson provides the team with a positionless player; he is tough and physical enough to battle down low but can also hurt you in transition with the ball or on the perimeter in the half court. Shawn Ohuabunwa gives the team a raw forward with a good motor and nice length. He knows what he can do and plays his role well. As usual, Mitch Ganote came up in big moments, rising to the challenge and picking apart teams with his IQ and well-rounded game.
God’s Property– The GP squad has gained a lot of steam through the first two live periods. Guard Ben Sheppard has continued to pick up offers with his smooth, skilled play. Trey Smith and Amari Davis both picked up offers from Delta State after impressing at Best Of The South. Smith has a quick trigger from the outside and can score in a variety of ways. Davis shows a lot of promise as a tall, long forward with athleticism and soft touch. Brian Knight has continued to play well, receiving an offer from Bob Jones after this past weekend. The big wing can plow through you on his way to the basket but will also keep you honest with an effective outside shot. I’m excited to see what Riley Costas does this weekend as well, he took the Best Of The South by storm last week. You can read about his play here. Payton Aiken, Maurice Hector, and Mayo Akinsunmi should give GP good minutes as perimeter options off the bench too.
FCI Warriors– FCI had some good moments throughout Best Of The South, including a blowout win over Ballin’ Blazers and a close victory over Upward Upstate. They have a versatile group with lots of weapons. Orry Owens seems to be their go-to guy as a scorer; he may not be the biggest but he is quick and makes all types of tough shots. Jervon Morris also stepped up as a scoring threat for FCI, getting hot out of nowhere in a few spurts during the tourney. Jeremiah Sanabria was a steady force inside for the team, providing physicality and rebounding while also scoring efficiently. The same goes for Kendall Norrington, who goes after rebounds with reckless abandon and can score when needed. Ryan Billig stepped up his level of play as the tournament went on; he had a great 2nd half against the Blazers and then coming up big against Upward Upstate. He does a little of everything for the team. Eli Barry has an overlooked impact for FCI also. He is one of the smarter players you’ll find, making the right play and nice passes frequently. Barry is a competitor and cares more about winning than scoring, which coaches always like.