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May, 2019

Bash in the Desert: Player Standouts

(By: Antonio G. Castillo)

Phoenix, AZ-

After the dust settled from this weekends action at the Phhacility and Inspire Courts, we look at some of the standouts who balled and stood-out during the weekend. Here's a list on some of the top 2020's and 2021's, in no particular order. 

Owen Koonce 6'5" G/SF, Centaurus HS/2020 (Colorado Titans Gold 17U)
With a lot of talent present at the "Bash in the Desert," had the performance of the weekend, willing the Colorado Titans Gold 17U to the championship. Did it in every way, scoring off the dribble attacking the hoop from all angles, using his quickness and strength to finish at the rim. Multiple times, brought oooh's and ahhh's from the stands as he threw down powerful dunks. He also showed his versatility by using his smooth rotating, pretty looking jump shot all over the mid-range, and beyond the 3-point line. Defensively, moved very well and showed good lateral quickness. Played physical and grabbed numerous boards. 

Pete Boyle 6'8" C, Boulder HS/2020 (Colorado Titans Gold 17U)
The long, lanky big man showed flashes of being an intriguing prospect. At times he displayed his footwork in the paint, with some nice up & under moves. Then he showed his shooting ability, setting up along the baseline knocking down 14-16 footers, and stretching the floor with some pick and slips, and nailing set three pointers from the wing. Added weight and strength will only make him an even more coveted prospect, along with continued work on his low post moves, he shows a lot of upside. 

Sam Dudley 6'3" G Santa Fe Christian HS/2020 (California Select 17U)
Combo guard who was productive when handling the rock, or playing off of it. Good handles, directed team from the point position, showed his ability as a floor leader, but was also a threat from the two spot, shooting the ball accurately, or lowering his head and driving to the bucket. Played with a high level of toughness, and was not afraid of contact. He made opposing teams pay when he was at the free throw line and his athleticism and quickness definitely surprised defenders. On numerous occasions Dudley would easily get by would-be defenders. 

James Burries 6'4" SG Moon Valley HS/2020 (Powerhouse Hoops White 17U)
Long, athletic wing who showed immediately on Friday night that he was going to be a factor opposing teams had to deal with all weekend. The main offensive threat for the Powerhouse Hoops White 17U team. His jump shot and athleticism helped set the tone. Very early connected from deep, the wings and straight away beyond the arc. As defenders came out on him, he made the adjustment of using his quick first step and attacking off the bounce. In close his athleticism helped him in finishing at the rim. He used his length well stepping into passing lanes, registering multiple deflections or steals. 

Osasere Ighodaro 6'10" F Desert Vista HS/2020 (Powerhouse Hoops Rise 17U)
The stretch 4 man, showed why he was the best long term high major prospect that stepped onto the floor. Over the last few weeks he has become a high major target with offers from Stanford, Vanderbilt, and USC. His play made it easy to see why he's rocketed up recruiting boards. When he wasn't inside in the paint or on the block going over either shoulder, he set up along the perimeter and routinely showed off his jump shot, with set range to hit the trey. Very long wing span, went up and down the floor fluidly, and used his length to alter or block multiple shots. A few added pounds of muscle and "Oso" could make a tremendous impact early on wherever he lands with his college commitment.

Deandre Henry 6'8" PF Mountain Pointe HS/2020 (Powerhouse Hoops Rise 17U)
Another big man for Powerhouse that was a heavy load inside and could not be moved. Some recruiting sites list him at 250lbs, give or take, and the two sport star certainly did not move like a typical big body. Very nimble on his feet, a quick leaper, and with ease rose several times to dunk the ball. Used his body well for position and sealed defenders. Once on the block or deep in the paint, it was no contest as Henry used a soft touch effectively from 8-12 feet. On a couple of occasions he did step out, face up, and connect on 14-16 foot jumpers. A physical big body that is oozing with plenty of potential and upside. Already holds numerous football offers as an offensive tackle on the gridiron. 

Dayton Harris 6'2" PG/SG Skyline HS/2020 (The Show 17U)
A play-maker with and without the ball in his hands. There were not many who could stay in front of this quick moving, athletic guard. Consistently drove and attacked, and ended up with buckets. Even among the traffic, with ease he would convert reverse lay-ups. When he wasn't dissecting defenses, he was hurting them over the top. No problems in using his effective perimeter game in order to score. Was constantly seen moving, working to get open when he wasn't getting his team into their sets as the point. Was also very active defensively using his quickness to pick pockets and force turnovers. 

LJ Glover 6'9" C Balboa Prep/2021 (Coastal Elite Slayers 16U)
Tremendously massive frame, and only a sophomore. Looked every bit of 240lbs+. Defenses could not move him once he anchored himself down in the lane or on the block. Effective with his back to the basket from 10 feet within, used his strength for position and threw down thunderous dunks that echoed throughout the gym. Leaps well off of his feet to change shots, and is able to clear the glass with his size. Still developing his low post and face up game, with a D1 frame already, he's another very intriguing prospect from the west coast who will garner serious D1 consideration because of his size. 

Solomon Little 6'3" PG Balboa Prep/2021 (Coastal Elite Slayers 16U)
Pound for pound, he and Harris were the quickest point guards in the tournament. Only a sophomore, Williams is already a blur with the ball in his hands. Because of his quickness, it wasn't all too difficult for him to capitalize on blow by's and attacking off the bounce. Great court vision and played selflessly. Did not hesitate in hitting his teammates for open shots, but if he had the angle or space, would finish more times than not at the goal. Because of his speed, can guard 94 feet, and is a very solid on the ball defender. 

Joseph Ogbebor 6'4" G Balboa Prep/2021 (Coastal Elite Slayers 16U)
Nicely built two guard, paired with Williams made this team a daunting challenge to stop. Has inside-out game, exactly what you want from your shooting guard. More than capable of hitting the long range jumper, knocking down more than a few trey's throughout the weekend's action. His athleticism, quickness, and strength were a problem for most defenders all weekend. As a guard rebounds well and isn't afraid to mix it up with bigger bodies down low. Working on keeping his emotions in check, but still applying the same fire and drive, will only make him that much more intriguing. 

Isaiah Broady 6'6" SF Chandler HS/2021 (Inspire 16U)
Of the 16U prospects, showed he could have the most upside. Very long frame, above average athlete, and as a wing had plus range on his jumper, connecting from 20+ feet several times. When in attack mode, his length and athletic ability let him contort himself to finish all types of lay-ups from several angles. The key was he finished. Solid handles and at times played the role of the point forward. Gets out and excels in transition. Light on his feet and was a factor on the boards, especially the offensive end, using his length well. Only a sophomore, he has plenty of time to add muscle and weight. 

Daunte Johnson 6'7" F Moreau Catholic/2022 (Inspire 16U)
Had a quiet demeanor about him and played mostly in the paint with his back to the basket. It wasn't until he started cleaning the glass, or getting fed down low, that he then put his abilities on display. At one point, deep in the paint, he used his leaping ability and length to surprise some onlookers with a 2-handed flush from a stand still position. Raw on the offensive end, but you see his athleticism and how he applies it on the defensive side to getting rebounds and contest shots. Plenty of room for growth, and as a freshman Johnson has a high ceiling.