Dick McConnell Holiday Tournament: Key Takeaways

High School
Arizona

Posted On: 11/25/18 8:00 AM

This thanksgiving break provided us with a lot of high school basketball to watch! One of the most exciting tournaments was the Dick McConnell Holiday Tournament: . Teams were competing hard and here are the key takeaways from the tournament: 

Catalina Foothills will be fine without Sam Beskind

In my opinion, Sam Beskind was the best player on that Catalina Foothills team last year. I feel like many people would agree as Sam went on to win multiple awards and landed himself a roster spot at Stanford. I’ll admit it, I was a little worried about this team coming into the season. I didn’t know how far they would be able to go without Beskind. No need to worry if you’re a Catalina Foothills fan. This squad is extremely well coached and will be fine without Beskind. I think they’ll still have enough fire power to make the state tournament and turn in a solid record this season. 

Khalid Whitaker a sleeper for Mr. Basketball?

46 points. 38 points. That is Khalid Whitaker’s points two nights in a row. Whitaker is averaging 42 points, which is extremely impressive especially when you look at who he played. Whitaker went up against a very solid Palo Verde team, which has a great dynamic duo in the backcourt of Jeff Thomas and Zionn Sandoval. The entire team could not stop Whitaker from scoring. The 38 points came against Amphi, who has one of the best perimeter defenders in the entire state. While Flowing Wells may not have the wins at the end of the season to warrant Whitaker taking home Mr. Basketball, his scoring averages should put him in the mix. 

Jackson Ruai Scoring

The best part of Jackson Ruai’s game, by far, is his lock down defensive ability. You can usually stick him on whoever and he will hold them to low numbers. My main concern for him at the next level is his scoring. Will he be able to contribute on both ends of the floor? Is his shooting going to be a concern? However, I did not have those concerns when I saw him play. Ruai scored 26 points easily against Walden Grove High School.