Posted On: 01/8/20 12:59 AM

Separated by just 3.8 miles, tensions were high as the Fort Lauderdale Flying L’s visited the Northeast Hurricanes in Oakland Park. With the atmosphere at an elevated level, the Hurricanes were able to blow past the Flying L’s by a final score of 84-69. After a back-and-forth first quarter that was tied up at 16, the Hurricanes extended out to a 9-point advantage heading into halftime led by a pair of 2023 forwards in Matthew and Ryan Bewley. The six-foot-eight “Twin Towers” vacuumed up points in the paint on the offensive end of the floor and chewed up rebounds off the glass for a majority of the game. 

With a 38-29 lead at the start of the third quarter, the brothers continued their dominance out of the gate and helped Northeast jump out to an 11-0 start thanks to points in transition off Fort Lauderdale turnovers. The punch by the Hurricanes effectively put the game on ice as the lead ballooned to twenty points. While a bucket by Fort Lauderdale’s Alex Vertus (2020) ended the Hurricane run, much of the damage had thus been done. The Flying L’s would make things a bit interesting later on, cutting the lead down to ten points with some hot outside shooting by 2021 Jordan Johnson (four 3-pointers) and a strong offensive performance by 2020 guard EJ Taylor, who finished with a team-high 17 points. Junior Jordan Shorter, who some recruiting annals have as a top 15 player in the state for his class, finished with a quiet ten points with a pair of 3-pointers. I was hoping more from the Shorter vs Hurricane match-up in this one.

The Hurricanes would right the ship in the closing minutes of the fourth quarter led by a couple of timely 3-pointers by 2021 guard Jameon Harris and dribble drives to the rim by 2021 guard Wesley Cardet. Cardet finished with 15 points while Harris added 12. Harris is a good outside shooter, extending out on the perimeter for his long range shots that he seemed to get off in a flash. The six-foot-four guard also looked very smooth in the open floor and can get to the rim at ease with his athleticism. Harris has received college interest from schools such as Ole Miss and Stetson. Cardet, who has a string of college offers to his own name, used his length well to get to the rim and is crafty with the ball in his hands to get past defenders for high percentage baskets. I thought the run and gun style of the Hurricanes allowed Fort Lauderdale to hang around longer than they probably should have or the final score could have been a much higher margin.

Matthew Bewley…next, next level?

I think sometimes we can all be prisoners of the moment, but I am about to make a very bold statement. If the one-and-done rule were to change in the future for the NBA, freshman Matthew Bewley has the talent and potential to make a jump straight to the association in three years. If you think I’m over-exaggerating, you did not see him against Fort Lauderdale. Bewley was purely dominant, as I clocked him with 28 points and 18 rebounds. The ninth grader nearly had a double-double by halftime and scored the team’s first eleven points. Quite frankly, Bewley was a mismatch due to his size, scoring a majority of his baskets in the paint or skying up above the rim for dunks. The scary part is I did not see much of his mid-range game because he really didn’t need it. If he continues to develop his shot I don’t know how you stop him if you are an opposing defense. Defensively, he has the size and length to disrupt shots that come his way in the paint. He was far and away the best player on a floor with a lot of potential collegiate talent beside him. In one instance, Bewley extended over to block a corner 3-pointer by Fort Lauderdale but was called for a questionable foul. It seemed like the ninth grader (can’t stress that enough) had no business blocking the shot and got over to the spot with relative ease. I saw Vernon Carey Jr., now at Duke, dominate as a senior last year for University School and this kid has those same game-changing qualities. The difference is he has three more years to prove me right. For all I know, he can grow a few more inches and put on added pounds of muscle. I’m holding firm that 2022 forward Gregg Glenn of Calvary Christian is the best player in the region but Bewley certainly has a strong case for that place on the mantle. Since I already made the correlation to the pro’s, its tame for me to say Bewley has Florida Player of the Year written all over him in the distant future. 

Bewley…Bewley.

If you think one is a problem, how about two.

Ryan Bewley is nearly as much of an issue for teams as his brother is and makes the Northeast front-court nearly unstoppable. Bewley finished with 17 points and nearly a double-double of his own. It seemed the Hurricanes were a much better team whether both players were on the floor or one had to fly solo for a handful of minutes. They also seemed to thwart any run by the Flying L’s when they looked to crawl back into the game in the second half. With the ability of the Hurricane guards in transition, getting Ryan and Matthew involved in the open floor is a nightmare to contain.

For any South Florida hoops news or information, please contact Michael Costeines on instagram @Steins_23 or follow him on Instagram @Mugertown_Mike23.