Last weekend, the best of the best Power 5 Conference teams converged on West Haven, CT to compete in the Vertical Hoops Prep Showcase. During the 8 game event over 2 days, the very best of New England’s prep basketball teams went at it. With a tantalizing combination of new schools and fresh talent alongside some of the best established programs in the nation, this event was an absolute show from start to finish. Here’s the second group of guys who really got after it throughout the weekend!
Kaden Stuckey, 6-9, 2024, Ridley College Prep
Stuckey was arguably the most put together prospect of any of the ones I watched this weekend. In a tough game against Putnam Science, arguably the best prep team in the country, Stuckey really stood out. Playing alongside a Canadian team, this Plano, TX native showed his ability to work on the low block. His width and impressive frame gave him an immediate advantage on the interior, as he was able to throw around some of the guys defending him (usually D1, Power 5 prospects). But while his rigidity in the low post gave him an upper hand, it was definitely not the only thing Stuckey could do. He knocked down a pair of triples (albeit with an unorthodox shooting form) and didn’t miss a free throw. Defensively, he was hard to move on the block and proved to be a serious issue for opposing drivers. Stuckey is one of the most under-the-radar players in all of high school basketball, and mid-major D1s should get in touch with Ridley College QUICK to get in touch with this young man.
Jzhaun Davis, 6-0, 2023, Bridgeport Prep
Jzhaun was a force from beyond the arc all weekend. Davis averaged 26 PPG over his two games at the event. He was locked in a crazy shooting battle with opposing guard Ky Houston all game in the loss against Busche Academy’s National Team. Davis was a shifty guard with a versatile bag and the ability to get his shot off at will. Defenders were left scratching their head at how to stop his constant motion and his ability to get free off of screens. With some hardnosed defenders on his squad, Davis served as the perfect balance with a poised offensive arsenal that kept his team in both of their games. While Bridgeport walked away 0-2 on the weekend, Jzhaun definitely came to the forefront of the CT Prep scene with his wild performances.
Josue Kandugi, 6-5, 2025, Bridgeport Prep
Kandugi flew under the radar over the weekend. But with a 19-point, 11-rebound performance against Busche on Sunday, he turned my head. Kandugi, as a sophomore, has a lot of poise to his game. Despite playing as a 4, Kandugi was able to stretch the floor and knock down deep midrange jumpers and even a three. But while his composure was a nice benefit, Kandugi really excelled on the glass with his aggression in the post. With a great vertical and solid build, it felt like nobody could keep Kandugi off the glass. Even fighting with a pair of 6-10 bigs, Kandugi’s aggressive rebounding and defensive tactics definitely stood out. He’s a classic hard nosed defender who you would want backing you up as much in a fight as you would on the court. As he gets more opportunities to develop his soft skills, Kandugi seems like he has the drive, passion, and build to flower into an incredible player.