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Posted On: 08/9/18 5:12 PM
The 4A classification is as good as any class in Arizona. Shadow Mountain, Buckeye, Salpointe, and Deer Valley are more than capable of playing with the top teams in the state as they are some of the top teams in the state. In Shadow’s case, one of the top teams in the nation.
This is a special year for 4A and one that is certainly worth watching!
There is no question that Shadow Mountain is the top team in 4A. They have the vast majority of last year’s state championship team returning with a couple of key transfers coming in as well. This team will be even more loaded than before.
The mainstays who will be returning and running the show are Jaelen House and Jovan Blacksher. In addition to being the top guard combo in the state, they are arguably the top backcourt in the west coast. House and Blacksher will have plenty of help this season with Antonio Reeves and Shemar Morrow already demonstrating that they are more than ready to play big roles.
In addition to these prospects and the transfers coming in, Jalen Williams is a solid prospect who is worth watching as well. This group is as talented of a team as Arizona has seen.
Buckeye also scored in the transfer market as Isaiah Marin left Copper Canyon and will be headed there. There is a chance that he will have to sit out half the season. With that said, the group had plenty of talent prior to the transfer.
The key returners for Buckeye from last year are Tay Boothman and Otis Frazier. Boothman can score the basketball in a hurry while Frazier provides good length and athleticism. Further, he is a tremendous scoring threat as well. As if these three were not enough, Adam Hamilton has improved greatly during his time with Team Zona and looks ready to make a big impact.
Salpointe could easily be higher and it would not surprise me in the slightest to see them playing for the state championship once again. There is not a point guard in 4A who is better than Evan Nelson. In fact, there are few guards in the state who can make that claim. He is extremely skilled and can make plays in a hurry.
Nelson also has the luxury of having a mid to high major prospect to help him run the team in Majok Deng. Between these two, Salpointe should have little struggle with competing in the top heavy 4A. They also return the vast majority of there team. Thus, they will have no shortage of role players whatsoever.
Deer Valley falls to 4A after making a run to the state championship for 5A. While they lost a huge part of their core, this group has plenty of returning talent. Brandon Savage will be one of the best and most versatile post players in 4A. Further, Johnny Diaz is one of the top guards in the classification. He is a stout on ball defender who can shoot the basketball at a high level.
In addition to those two, the Allen twins, Jaret and Jalen provide good length and versatility as well. This will be one of the longer teams in 4A.
There are a number of quality teams in 4A, but Arcadia makes it into our rankings due to the emergence of Carter Murphy and the transfer of Max Marjerle. This will give Arcadia one of the top guard/wing combinations in the class as well as in the state.
They will also have James Hodge-Green in the mix. Murphy has blown up due to his strong play with Alvin Gentry Elite. He is a knockdown shooter with a sneaky vertical that can leave prospects in the rim. He will be the top prospect for this team and will make a huge impact in 4A.