Posted On: 11/28/18 8:11 PM
The 10th Annual Thanksgiving Hoopfest hosted by Glenn Smith was held this weekend at Duncanville High School. The two-day event truly brought out the best of the best and contributor Brandon Jenkins was on bored to catch it all. He will recapping the best players on each team. This article highlights:San Joaquin (CA), Rockwall, and Little Elm.
San Joaquin Memorial (CA)
Jalen Green / 6’6″/ SG / San Joaquin Memorial (CA) / 2020
The special part about the 10th year of the Thanksgiving Hoopfest was the expected arrival of the number one junior in the country, Jalen Green. It was nearly all of Texas’ (including my) first time seeing the highly touted guard in person and it is safe to say he left a great first impression. Jalen backed up his number one status with big time scoring performances including a gamewinng stepback three in overtime Friday night and out-dueling R.J. Hampton Saturday night to get the win. He has a perfect lengthy basketball body and possesses great size for position with elite athleticism. The number one junior gets where ever he wants on the court and is an explosive acrobat when finishing at the rim. Jalen definitely exceeded expectations. It will be fun to follow his journey from five-star high school prospect to first round NBA draft pick.
Final Stats vs. Rockwall: 46 points, three rebounds, three assists, and three steals
Final Stats vs. Little Elm: 23 points, six rebounds and four assists
Braxton Meah/ 6’11″/ C / San Joaquin Memorial (CA) / 2020
Braxton and Jalen form a nice inside-out duo for the Panthers. The thin-framed big man (originally from Utah) is a new edition to San Joaquin Memorial. He provides the squad with rim protection and gives them a rebounding threat on both ends. Braxton has long arms in which he uses to extend and score in the paint offensively. Defensively, Braxton uses them to block and alter shot attempts. He is relatively new to the national scene, but I cannot help but think that his stock will rise in the national rankings due to the amount of exposure he will receive throughout the high school season.
Final Stats vs. Rockwall: 16 points and eight rebounds
Final Stats vs. Little Elm: 6 points and four rebounds
The rise of Samuell Williamson has been something special to see. When I first started covering Texas basketball, he was a stiff and skinny wing who was a shooting threat from the perimeter, which included a deadly mid-range game. He finished the summer going into his junior year with an offer from Kansas after his excellent play with Texas Impact 4:13. Fast forward to now, he is in extremely serious consideration for a fifth star and McDonald’s All-American Game slot. One of the reasons our staff ranked Sam at the number two spot was because of how his game offensively translates to the highest level. He displayed this against Jalen Green cashing in on numerous jumpers from all levels (especially from three) and making the right pass to cutting teammates for the assist. He is at his best when isolating himself on the wing, backing down defenders, and finding a comfortable spot in the midrange to rise up and knock down the turnaround jumper. His game is fluid and in my opinion Jayson Tatum-like. The Louisville commit is truly deserving of the final star.
Final Stats vs. San Joaquin Memorial (CA): 34 points (6-7 3PT FGM)
Alec Grandstaff / 6’1″/ SG / Rockwall / 2019
Nobody has been shooting the ball on the big stage the way Alec has. He has made defenders pay with the long ball all season. The sharpshooter catches fire after seeing one attempt fall through the net. Alec is playing with a boat load of confidence. He will not be an unsigned senior for long if he keeps shooting the ball at an efficient and high rate.
Final Stats vs. San Joaquin Memorial (CA): 17 points (3-4 3PT FGM)
R.J. Hampton / 6’5″/ SG / Little Elm / 2020
R.J. started off slow early in the first quarter Saturday night, but quickly picked it up from then on. The top-five nationally ranked guard was at his best when getting by defenders and scoring at the rim. He is wiry strong and is a relentless finisher through contact at the basket. The streaky volume shooter caught fire from deep at the right time in the fourth quarter. But, he came up short missing the game tying three and losing the game to San Joaquin Memorial.
Final Stats vs. San Joaquin Memorial (CA): 33 points, three rebounds, and one assist