Tuesday, June 30, 2009

13U Nationals Update!

Juice All Stars Cruising In Memphis

The 13U Nationals is in full throttle down in Memphis. Some of the top teams in the region are rumbling as we speak. Here are some early scores from Tennessee including the current records of the Tri-State area teams.

Youth Interlock (1-0)

Defeated Soysa Orlando Suns 83-69

King Street Kings (0-2)

Lost To Team Bama 55-45
Lost To Kentucky Elite 58-28

Team NJ ABC (2-0)

Defeated Memphis Bulls 62-52

Defeated Soysa Orlando Suns 58-57

NYC Gauchos (1-0)

Defeated Team 3on7 69-63

Juice All Stars (1-0)

Defeated Hoopmatics 68-26

Team Kobe (0-1)

Lost To Wilson Blue Devils 54-52

Philly Select (0-1)

Lost To So Cal Tigers 43-39

Team Nelson (0-2)

Lost To Team Rim Rockers 60-58

Lost To United Stars 66-53

Monday, June 29, 2009

Ramone Gibbons Headed To All Star Classic

Ramone Gibbons AKA “Boston Strangler” of the Boston Saintz has accepted an invite to the Basketball Spotlight All Star Classic powered by Converse. The powerful two- guard had a strong showing at the Grand Finale, AAU State tournament and Hall Of Fame Classic. Right now he’s rated as the top 8th Grader in Massachusetts and has already caught the eye of several colleges. Gibbons appeared excited about the opportunity, “I can’t wait to play against the other top players in the region. I’m out to prove there are some capable ballers coming out of the New England area” Gibbons said. His coach Tywon Boswell also thinks it’s an honor and good opportunity for Ramone. Tywon stated “Ramone playing in this type of event helps to get our program get on the map and will open up doors for other players in the New England area to get noticed”.

Stay Tune as Basketball Spotlight will profile the 23 remaining players selected for this event. The Basketball Spotlight All Star Classic will take place August 15th at Life Center Academy in Burlington, NJ.

In The Spotlight: Shavar Newkirk

Name: Shavar Newkirk

AAU Team: Team Scan

Position: Point Guard

Class: 2014

Breakdown: Newkirk has found a home with Team Scan and is turning himself into a capable floor general. He has learned how to get his teammates involved doesn’t turn the rock over and knows how to play the passing lanes on defense. His squad just won the Jr. Nationals up in Massachusetts and Shavar ran the controls. Improvement on his jump shot will take a long way as especially on the high school level. Basketball Spotlight will be keeping an eye on him.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Basketball Spotlight All Star Classic Is Set

The Basketball Spotlight All Star Classic powered by Converse is set for August 15th at Life Center Academy. Basketball Spotlight will be selecting 24 8th Graders to participate in this event. We will commit ourselves to selecting the top players for this event. Stay tune as the rosters will be coming out shortly. Basketball Spotlight also will be presenting the Player Of The Year and Scholar Athlete Award courtesy of All Star Trophies.

Event: Basketball Spotlight All Star Classic Powered By Converse

Date: August 15th 2009

Place: Life Center Academy, (Burlington, NJ)

Confirmation List
1. Ramone Gibbons - Boston Saintz (Boston, Mass.)
2. Jaren Sina - Hoop Heaven AAU (Lake Hopatcong, NJ)
3. Kavon Stewart - Playaz Basketball Club (Paterson, NJ)
4. Jason Boswell - Long Island Lightning (Bronx, NY)
5. Shafeek Taylor - Peacemakers (Philadelphia, PA)
6. Jordan Washington - NY Panthers (Queens, NY)
7. Dwayne Foreman - Westchester Hawks (Spring Valley)
8. Britton Lee - Peacemakers (Philadelphia, PA)
9. Jordan Forehand - NJ Shore Shots (Bridgewater, NJ)
10. Reggie Cameron - Playaz Basketball Club (Hackensack, NJ)
11. Conrad Chambers - Team Nelson (Chester, PA)
12. Amar Stukes - Higher Ground Warriors (Germantown, PA)

Beckham Used Hoop Group Jr. Elite Camp As Platform

Last summer Jalen Beckham traveled to the Hoop Group Jr. Elite Camp to show that the Bluegrass State had ballers. The ultra talented guard stole the show and finished the camp as one of the top guards in attendance. Beckham used this fuel for a great freshman season at powerhouse Lexington Catholic and earned a invite to the prestigious Nike Hoop Jamboree.

Are you the next Jalen Beckham? If so enter the Hoop Group Jr. Elite Camp and show you skills!

Date: August 2nd Thru 5th

Place: Albright College (Reading, Pennsylvania)

Click Here For More Information

Friday, June 26, 2009

Summit Sports Training Center: Come Train With The Pros

Summits Sports Training Center is the elite performance enhancement center in the Philadelphia area. At Summit, we provide first-class sports specific training for numerous collegiate and professional athletes. What makes Summit unique is its heavy investment into sports science and technology to maximize results. Partner this with our experienced and talented professional trainers and you have a recipe for success.

Since 2001 we have been exclusive providers of Strength and Conditioning Services for the Philadelphia 76ers and Saint Josephs University, as well as other professional athletes from the NBA, NHL and European leagues. Summit uses the latest technology in the field of strength and conditioning to enhance athletic performance. High speed treadmills, plyometrics , Olympic platforms and various modes of resistances training incorporate our multi-faceted approach to training.

Summit Website

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Inside The Game Over Classic

The Game Over Classic had some interesting stories and developments. Basketball Spotlight was in the building and here is what we came away with.

Playaz Make Statement!

We had Playaz Basketball Club rated #4 in the region in our last rankings. Since then they won the Rumble In The Bronx and the Game Over Classic including wins over #1 Long Island Lightning and #2 Peacemakers by 20 points. The Playaz have two more hurdles to jump before repeating as the Team Of The Summer. Since they don’t usually go to the 14U Nationals a good run at the Team Nelson tourney and a good showing in Vegas should give them the nod.

Juice All Stars Are For Real!

I finally got a chance to see Juice All Stars and I came away impressed. They have the star power to crush many squads as the demonstrated this weekend. But what really caught my attention was the way they shared the rock and looked happy playing with each other. For them to win the National title I think they need to add one big and a back up true point guard. Hopefully, they can keep the chemistry when they face some adversity in Memphis.

The City vs. KSK Rematch A No Go!

I was a little disappointed because a missed The City vs. KSK pool game on Saturday. I figured both teams would make it to the finals and I would be treated to another thriller. My hopes were dashed as KSK dropped out of the semifinals because they felt the gym size was unsafe for their players. I’m also a fan and I really wanted to watch this match up hopefully they might meet in Hampton at the Nationals.

Summer Slam Cancelled For All Star Classic Preparation

Basketball Spotlight prides ourselves on producing good events therefore we have decided to cancel the Summer Slam tourney to prepare for the Basketball Spotlight All Star Classic. We encourage teams that were interested in the Summer Slam to participate in the Team Nelson 14U Pre National Round Up July 18th and 19th for more information on the event contact Howard Hudson at 610-496-9963 or Hassan at 484-614-8443. The Basketball Spotlight All Star Classic press release will be coming next week.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Game Over Classic 14U Recap: Playaz Continue To Roll!

Playaz Get it Done

By: Orlando Cameron (Special To Basketballspotlight.com)

The Playaz 14's came away with their 5th straight chip, beating a talented Peacemakers team 75-55. The Playaz took advantage with the monster play of their 2 big men, Reggie Cameron and Amir Maddred. The Peacemakers had no answer for the duo as they combined for 39 points, 26 rebounds and 7 blocked shots. They also got strong play from Kavon Stewart, who contributed 9 points and 6 assists and made a key three pointer as the Playaz took complete control of the game in the second half. Trailing 35-34, the Playaz outscored the
Peacemakers 41 to 20 in the second half as Cameron (23pts, 15rebs, 2blks),the tournament M.V.P. was strong inside and out while Maddred (16pts, 11rebs, 5blks) was a beast in the middle. The Peacemakers were led by talented guard Britton Lee who along with his teammates continued to battle and never gave up. Lee finished with 20 points. The Playaz impressed this weekend getting by D.C. Assault, the Long Island Lightning and the Peacemakers. Very impressive, considering they just won the always tough Rumble In The Bronx tournament at Fordham last week.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Game Over Classic 12U Recap: The City Romp

The City Prevail Easily

Eric Pachall scored 14 points as The City stormed past Team Underrated for a lopsided victory in the 12U Championship for the Game Over Classic.

Spotlight Players

Josh Wallace Forward (The City)- Wallace took home the MVP honors scoring in the lane while absorbing contact. His strength and craftiness with the rock makes his difficult for defenders to slow him down inside.

Eric Pachall Forward (The City)- Eric showed once again he can hit the outside shot and score inside. It was an easy day Paschall and company but he did begin the game with a spark. This kid has a lot of good tools.

Wolfgang Novogratz Guard (The City)- Wolfie played some inspired ball before the game got out of reach. He created a few opportunities for his teammates while controlling the rock . He also dropped a couple of buckets himself.

Billy Clark Guard (Team Underrated)- There wasn’t much scoring from his squad but I did see a couple of things in Clark’s game that caught my attention. I like how he handles the pill and a few of the crisp moves he made going towards the cup.

Diary Of A Baller: Jordan Forehand Entry #17

Hello Basketball World!

It's your boy Jordan. Another busy basketball week.

It began at the University of Virginia where I attended the Tony Bennett Basketball School Elite Camp. It was a two day camp and it had a lot of good players from different parts of the country. The ball playing was intense as everybody was trying to showcase their talents...including yours truly! Many of the players that I played against were 15-17 years old. Several of the coaches were surprised that I was still 14 and would not turn 15 until November. I took that as a complement. I enjoy playing up in age because you can really test your abilities that way. I later took an unofficial tour of the campus. I loved everything about it!

I also got the opportunity to stop by the University of Maryland and I took an unofficial tour of the campus. It was also very nice. During this summer, I have also visited the campuses of Providence College and Villanova. Visiting these schools has increased my determination to do well in school and to keep working on my game. God willing, I would love the opportunity to play at this level.

I read an article in the USA Today about two highly recruited players, Brandon Knight and Harrison Barnes. Not only are they highly ranked, Brandon has a 4.0 GPA and Harrison has a 3.4 GPA. My parents say that an athlete with brains can write his ticket to any college they choose. I think a lot of players think that it is not cool to be smart too. Everybody will not make the NBA. Those who do not will need to have a good education to be successful in life. If basketball can get you into college make sure you use it to your advantage...athletically and academically.

My other 15U team, the Greenburgh Kings, participated in the Boo Williams tournament down in Hampton, Virginia. We advanced out of our bracket, but lost to a team from Hampton by 5 in the semi-finals. Thecompetition was pretty good. The guards down there all play like a fellow Hamptonian, Mr. Allen Iverson. I also got the chance to visit the campus of Hampton University. It is also a very beautiful campus that sits right by the water and is filled with a lot of history. Booker T. Washington actually attended Hampton as well as my father.

On Tuesday, I am leaving to go to San Diego, California for the Adidas Phenom camp. I am really looking forward to this camp. It should be alot of fun and should be very competitive. Some of my friends John Hodge, Alex Perlman, Tyler Weeks and Cody Jenkins are also going to this camp. Should be a lot of fun!

More upcoming events for me will be:

14U Nationals in Orlando, Florida, July 31 - Aug 8
15U Nationals in Clarksville, Tennessee, July 11 - 16
Las Vegas events running from July 21 - 31

A lot of basketball left!!


Game Over Classic 13U Recap: Juice All Stars Pour It On!

Juice All Stars Cruise To Crown

Isiah Whitehead scored a game high 22 points as the Juice All Stars ran past Playaz Basketball Club 65-28 to win the Game Over Classic 13U Championship. Juwuan Carter finished with 8 points for the Playaz in the loss.

Spotlight Players

Isiah Whitehead Forward (Juice All Stars)- I haven’t seen Whitehead since Funsport and I was very impressed. The athletic wing is very smooth and excels in transition. He has an unconventional release on his outside but it was definitely dropping. I heard the Lance Stephenson comparisons and can understand them to a point. One difference I do see is that Isiah can be a huge factor in the game without dominating the rock. I also like the way he seems to enjoy dishing the rock to teammates. Hopefully I will get to catch him in a more competitive contest.

Thomas Holley Forward (Juice All Stars)- The inside force seems to have trimmed up a little which is important because the opposition will become more athletic this year at the Nationals. I love his willingness to attack the glass for boards and put backs. He will be a vital part of their run in Memphis.

Chance Ellis Forward (Juice All Stars)- This kid has a beautiful stroke from the perimeter which allows him to stretch the defense. He shoots the rock with great confidence especially from behind the arc. He seemed to be hobbling while running the floor hopefully it’s something minor and he will be ready to go when the plane takes off for Memphis.

Anthony Williams Guard (Juice All Stars)- This was my first look at Williams and I like his size running the point. Once you hit the 13U age group having a big guard is a must if you want to make a serious run at the title. Williams has good court vision and the athleticism to make big plays.

Juwuan Carter Guard (Playaz)- Carter made some good moves towards the basket and hit a couple of high arching outside shots. I like the fact that he played buzzer to buzzer even though the game was out of reach.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Coming Soon: Basketball Spotlight All Star Classic

Basketball Spotlight will be bringing together the top 24 8th Graders in the region for the Inaugural Basketball Spotlight All Star Classic. This event was created to commemorate the success of the selected players before they go off to high school. Player selection will be totally the job of the committee and they will be dedicated to being very fair in the process. Stay tune for more details.

Basketball Spotlight Headed To Game Over Classic

This weekend Basketball Spotlight will be headed to the Game Over Classic. We will be bringing you coverage of the 11U, 12U and 13U finals. I saw the schedule and there should be some heavy competition. We also might get a chance to watch the much talked about Juice All Stars 13 and Under squad. Stay tuned Sunday night for complete recaps of those championships.

In The Spotlight: Shaquan Worthy

Name: Shaquan Worthy

AAU Team: Team NJ ABC

Position: Point Guard

Class: 2014

Breakdown: This season Worthy has performed like one of the top floor generals in the region. The Allen Iverson type has uplifted his squads play by becoming their fierce leader on the floor. Worthy’s knack for taking the big shot or creating his teams offense has helped Team NJ ABC win the NJ state crown and make deep runs in other tourneys. Now he’s headed to the AAU Nationals so we will see if he can keep the good work going.

In The Spotlight: Malik Johnson

Name: Malik Johnson

AAU Team: U Turn Warriors

Position: Point Guard

Class: 2015

Breakdown: I watched Johnson rock twice this year; once at the MIT and then at the MDC. The pint size floor general dazzled the crowd with slick ball handling and uncanny court vision. Malik broke down defenders on a regular basis using lightning quick moves. He was a vital part of his teams success at the MDC.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Former Phenom Evans Moves Closer To Reaching His NBA Dream!

Tyreke Evans received his stamp as an 8th Grader and went beyond many expectations. He’s currently on his way to the NBA Draft and possibly a lottery pick. I’m very proud of him and his family because of the hard work they put in to get to this point. Now take a look at his pre draft workout for the Sacramento Kings. Youngsters pay attention to the type of workout they put Evans through because you will see that even the pros care about fundamentals. Keep working hard you can be next!

Evans Predraft Workout

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Basketball Spotlight Poll: Who Will Perform The Best At 13U Nationals?

Can Youth Interlock Make A Deep Run In Memphis?

The 13U AAU Nationals are set to begin next weekend in Memphis, Tennessee. Basketball Spotlight has been tracking the top teams in this age group the entire season. Now it’s your chance to speak out. We have listed teams that have confirmed that they will be attending the AAU Nationals and you vote on who you think will perform the best in Memphis.

1. Youth Interlock
2. Gauchos
3. Team NJ ABC
4. Juice All Stars
5. Team Kobe
6. Team Nelson
7. Philly Select
8. Future Players

13U National Confirmation List

Playtime Wins MIT Silver Bracket

The Playtime Panthers 9U (2009 NJ State Champs) team won the Maryland Invitational Tournament "Silver Bracket" against Bowie Hawks in a close game with the final score 39-36 in a come from behind thriller.

Adrian Baucum
Justin Kea
Cory Gordon
Chazz Clark
Jalen Lecque
Zegary Scott III
Jelani Bowden Jr.
Aaron Carter
Akrum Ahemed
De’Andre Grange

Kev Kea
Jelani Bowden Sr.
Antoine Clark

In The Spotlight: Tarvaris Headen

Name: Tarvaris Headen

AAU Team: Team Final

Position: Combo Guard

Class: 2014

Breakdown: Headen has been on a hot streak. He had an excellent showing at the MDC and helped his team win the Never Nervous Invitational crown. The lefty is a bull in transition and squashes any small guard that’s between him and the cup. His jump shot is still developing but he will drop a few when you least expect it. I’m also impressed with the fire he brings to the court.

In The Spotlight: John Severe

Name: John Severe

AAU Team: Long Island Lightning

Position: Combo Guard

Class: 2013

Breakdown: Severe started the season off with a huge name after I watched him at Funsport. He kept the momentum going at the Grand Finale helping the NY Panthers reach the finals and at the MDC by leading his squad (LI Lightning) to the Gold Ball. Severe has to be regarded as one of the top guards in the class. He combines a power game with a relentless attitude of getting to the rim. He has a bright future and we will be watching.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Open Letter To Lance Stephenson

Dear Lance Stephenson,

I’ve written letters like this to other athletes, so don’t take it personal or as a stab. I would like to talk to you as an older brother but I used this forum so other youngsters could also learn a lesson.

As a young phenom you were rushed into the limelight because of your basketball talent and presumed potential. People from all circles bowed down but also turned their heads when you did things unfavorable. You were featured on DVD’s, magazine covers, internet sites and cable television. Most felt you were ready for the NBA now so they gave you the moniker “Born Ready”. Now all of those media giants that built you up are trying to tear you down. It’s seems every editor or blogger has something bad to say about you and your future. Did you show a lack of judgment a few times? Yes, but you are just like any other modern spoiled teenager.

My message to you is to use all this negative attention as fuel young brother. You see Lance everything in the universe is a test and has balance. Since you received so much attention and accolades early on it was written that you would have to go through these tough times before you reach your pinnacle. It’s time for you to silence all those critics by keeping your nose clean and disciplining yourself for the long haul. After you make your decision to go to college or Europe I want you to take a copy of many of those negative articles with you. This will keep you focused on your goal at hand and remind you what you are facing if you quit or blow this opportunity.

Remember it’s always darkest before the light. Now it’s time for you to step through the light and prove you were really “Born Ready”. Good Luck with everything I know you will succeed.

Yours truly,

Mike Melton

Diary Of A Baller: Jordan Forehand Entry #16

Hello basketball world. It's your boy Jordan. School is out and I am ready for a busy basketball summer.

My 15U team, Sports University/Team Izod played this weekend in the "Rumble in the Bronx" tournament. We made it to the final four before losing by two points to Garner Road. Winning this game would have put us in the championship. We beat some good teams along the way which included the Gauchos, Team Philly, Alexandria Kings and the Metro Hawks.

My 14U team, the NJ Shoreshots also played in the tournament. In the three games we played, I was able to play in two. In those two we lost to PPY Elite and the Playaz. In the first game we lost to Mass Rivals. The game against the Playaz was my fourth game of the day. It was fun because I got a chance to play against my boy's Kevon and Reggie.

This week I am going to the Tony Bennett Elite camp which is being held on the campus of the University of Virginia. I will be down there Monday and Tuesday.

Next weekend, I will be going to the Boo Williams tournament in Hampton, Virginia with my other 15U team the Greenbugh Kings.

Next week I am heading out to San Diego, California for the Adidas Phenom camp. That should be a lot of fun.

Over the summer I am doing an online SAT prep course and I have a goal of learning 20-25 new vocabulary words a week. I can't let the brain cells die over the summer!

Well that's it for now.


Monday, June 15, 2009

Basketball Spotlight Presents Summer Slam

Basketball Spotlight presents Summer Slam. This is event is for 11U and 14U and will take place in Lakewood, NJ. The event has a special prize never done before by Basketball Spotlight. The winner of each age bracket will have their AAU Nationals registration fee covered by us ($650), while the runner up will be allowed to enter the Grand Finale for free in December. This event will surely fill up quickly so act fast. To register contact Mike Melton at basketballspotlight@hotmail.com or 609-532-5122.

Special Notice: Teams must present official AAU rosters for this event.

Event: Basketball Spotlight Summer Slam

Ages: 11U and 14U

Date: July 11th and 12th

Place: Lakewood, NJ

Price: $300

14U Teams

1. Team Nelson
2. NY Panthers
3. NJ Crusaders
4. NJ Pirates
5. Boston Saintz
6. Higher Ground Warriors

7. Brooklyn Ballers
8. Hockessin PAL Cougars

11 and Under Teams

1. Team Battle
2. Scan Wolves
3. New Heights NYC
4. Queens Elite
5. SJ Juice All Stars
6. Mid Jersey Heat
7. Riverside Hawks
8. Connecticut Rough Riders


Basketball Spotlight MDC 11U Championship Highlights: Team Battle vs. DC Assault

The highly anticipated battle of the 11U heavyweights started out as a classic match up. Team Battle controlled the paint while DC Assault responded with guard and wing play. In the second half the Jersey boys pulled away and finished off their Potomac Valley counterparts with a double digit victory. Check the highlights below.

Team Battle vs. DC Assault

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Baby Ballerz Feat: Jarron Cumberland

Name: Jarron Cumberland

AAU Team: Cincinnati Knights

Position: Forward

Class: Class 2016

Breakdown: Few youngsters at this age are fundamentally sound as Cumberland. The forward isn’t super athletic but he kills the competition with knowing how to establish position and converting once he gets the rock on the blocks. At this age making layups can be do or die for team and Cumberland is pretty efficient in this category.

Baby Ballerz Feat: Rakym Felder

Name: Rakym Felder

Nickname: Left Handed Bandit

AAU Team: New Heights

Position: Shooting Guard

Class: 2016

Breakdown: Felder has the bloodline of a baller. His brother Davontay Grace destroyed the circuit as a youngster with Team Next. Unlike his brother Rakym has an effective outside shot already but they are similar in terms of going hard and putting numbers up. The Brownville boys are born to get busy and Felder takes this mentality on the floor every game.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Coaches Corner Feat. Terrance "Munch" Williams

I first met Terrance “Munch” Williams in 2005 at the Metro Hoops MDI. He was coaching a new squad called Team ROC and was promoting this young baller named Omari Lawrence. Williams stated that Lawrence was among the top 8th Graders in the region and I needed to watch him rock. His eagerness convinced me to check out the young phenom and I must say the kid had game. Lawrence went on to stardom in high school while Williams coached about two more seasons and then left the circuit. This fall I got a call from some guy saying he wanted to enter Team Scan into my tournament and I was happy to learn that it was Munch. I always felt he was one of the good guys and needed to return. I talked to Munch and picked his brain about a few topics and here’s what he had to say;

Welcome to the Coaches Corner:

BS: When and why did you return to coaching on the circuit?
TW: Well I came back about a year ago. I started out by working with the players in my after school program (Scan). After I started developing their skills and took them out on the circuit in September. I came back because I felt players needed to get developed on and off the court.

BS: Why did you choose to work with a start up squad like Team Scan instead of coming back with an established program?
TW: I wanted to work with these guys because I believe in my program and developing young men into productive members of society. I knew while working with Team Scan I would be running the show my way and I wouldn’t have to give in to the politics of the game. I also wanted to work with younger guys because I feel they still have love for the game and it’s not about sneaker contracts or sneaker camps.

BS: How do you deal about player movement especially in NYC where it seems to be frequent?
TW: Well I try to get a core group of parents to buy into our program. I let them know that we care about their son’s well being on and off the floor. Once they see how sincere we are about 70 to 85 percent will elect to stay around while others might choose to go. As long as we are doing for the right reasons that’s all that matters.

BS: Name some of the places you have been and your tourney results?
TW: We have been to Philly, New Jersey, Connecticut, Rhode Island and Boston among other places. We have entered 23 tournaments since September and won 18. We haven’t finished less than the Final Four all year.

BS: What is the goal for Team Scan?
TW: Tell you the truth Mike, it’s not about basketball. I just choose to use basketball as a vehicle to help my players become successful. We do so many other things as a team such as going to church, movies, college tours and looking at different prep or private schools. I hope all my players can get a great education and go on to college. That’s my goal because the NBA is a pipe dream in many cases.

BS: How do you feel about the state of AAU basketball?
TW: I think AAU can swallow you up if you are not careful. That goes for a player, parent or coach. It seems like a lot of parents are pushing the kids to be ranked or to get noticed early but the kids are not having fun. If you look at a game most of the players on the floor don’t seem to be enjoying playing the game. Throughout the game you can see players, parents and coaches getting angry about things that are apart of the game. I believe too much emphasis is put on being on a winning team so if a team doesn’t win all the time players want to leave and other problems arrive. I think we should let the kids have fun again and focused on them going to college.

BS: I think that should sum it up.
TW: Thanks, Mike but I would also like to let you know that Team Scan also has other successful programs including our 11U team coached by Coach Dave.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Hoop Group Jr. Elite Weekend Award Winners

Our award winners from the weekend:

8th and 9th grade MVP- Sterlin Johnson, extremely athletic wing with a high ceiling. Sterlin displayed great 1 on 1 moves all weekend and showed off his athleticism by throwing a few down on the fast break. He is a solid defender and rebounder and if he continues to work hard he will end up being one of the top players in Delaware in years to come.

8th and 9th grade Most Improved Player- Bernard Mokum, works very hard and showed the coaches he wanted to get better. Bernard was always going full speed, always asking questions and had the attitude it takes to get better. He will become an elite player if he continues this great work ethic.

7th grade and lower MVP- Jaquan Hickman, a big athletic wing from New York who also plays on the dominant Abyssinian Church team. He has the ability to score from all different spots on the court. He is able to blow past bigger defenders and use his strength against smaller defenders. He was a dominant force all weekend.

7th grade and lower Most Improved Player- Wayne White Jr, a tenacious working kid who really had a knack to get better all weekend. Wayne worked tirelessly in drill sets and games and caught the coaches’ eye. Wayne is definitely a kid to watch out for in the future.

Hoop Group Jr. Elite Weekend Recap: Part 1

Mikey Dixon was very impressive this weekend.

Hoop Group Skills Camp kicked off their 47th summer the weekend of June 6th-7th with a Junior Elite Weekend up in the beautiful Pocono Mountains. The weekend consisted of the best rising 5th-9th graders from all over the northeast. This two-day camp consisted of intense skill development, competitive games, and an interesting lecture from Steve Keller from the National Recruiting Service. The National Recruiting Service was also on hand to evaluate the talent from the weekend. At a camp with over 110 kids, it is impossible to recognize everyone who played well, but here are a few of the top performers from both leagues.

Class 2015, 2016 and 2017

Mikey Dixon, a tough point guard from Delaware, has the offensive mindset to get his players involved first. Mikey is a true point guard in that he is able to get into the lane and kick to his open man. He has a good shooting touch and was able to knock down the open jump shot consistently all weekend.

Rayle Cortoron, a strong guard who causes match up problems for opponents because of his size and strength. His talent and ability shows why Abyssinian Church is one of the top teams in New York. Rayle is able to control the game and has great passing and court vision to find his teammates.

Trevon Duval, A rising 5th grader from Delaware showed off his skill by playing with mostly older talent all weekend. Trevon did not back down to anyone and always competed and worked hard. Trevon is a true point guard who did a great job running and leading his team.

Rakym Felder, a tough strong New York guard who has the ability to take his man off the dribble. Rakym was unselfish as he was not afraid to pass the ball when he got into the lane. He was also a very tough defender.

Mahamood Davis, another Abyssinian Church standout was truly one of the hardest working guards in the camp. He is a true competitor who does everything for his team to win. He brought energy and intensity to the offensive and defensive end of the court. Once Mahamood develops a consistent jump shot he is going to be one tough player to stop.

Christopher Middleton, a strong guard from New York who has great ball handling ability for his size. He is able to lead the break and find the open man. Chris also works hard on the defensive end and is able to cause havoc.

Hoop Group Jr. Elite Coming Soon!

The nations top Jr. Elite Camp returns August 2nd thru 5th at Albright College in Reading, Pennsylvania. The Hoop Group Jr. Elite Camp will bring together to top ballers from around the country for some serious competition. Last summer the camp was outstanding and Basketball Spotlight will be in the building again. Don’t miss the chance to compete against the best. For More Information Click Below

Hoop Group Website

For Last Summer Recaps Click Below

Hoop Group Jr. Elite Camp 08 Recaps

Basketball Spotlight Message Board!

Basketball Spotlight now has a message board. This board will be used to have the fans discuss matters that are pertaining to basketball. Please refrain from using profanity or any other insulting comments. This will be used as a trial basis if we feel that it’s becoming a problem we will delete it. Enjoy the message board and have fun.

Click Here To Enter and Register

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Basketball Spotlight 13U Top 10 Rankings: Youth Interlock Staggers But Holds On

Youth Interlock Holds On To #1

The Basketball Spotlight 13U Rankings had some movement and quite a few new teams. We would like to start off by saying we have heard a few reports about the Juice All Stars and on paper they have a stacked squad. Unfortunately, we cannot include them in our rankings until we see them in person. We had every intention of watching them this past weekend but they dropped out of the Blow Up. Hopefully we will get a look at this squad soon. These rankings are based on tournament play and who we feel are the top 10 teams. This is only our opinion and should be taken as such.

Basketball Spotlight 13U Top 10

1. Youth Interlock: YI ran through their AAU regionals as expected but suffered a couple of losses in a recent tournament. These losses might benefit them in the long run as they get ready for a strong title push at the AAU Nationals in Memphis.

2. Team Nelson: The “Triple Crown” winners continue to stack trophies. The have the coaching and experience to beat anyone that steps on the floor. That proved this at the MDC by winning several games by 3 points or less.

3. BABC: I saw this squad at the Hall Of Fame Classic and I’m telling they are loaded with talent. The have a couple of forwards that play above the rim and couple of guard with some serious swagger. This squad is dangerous.

4. Gauchos: The Choz lost to Juice All Stars in their regional finals and have been under the radar this year. Things will get a little interesting at the MIT as they will be in the same pool as Team Nelson. That should be a good match-up.

5. Team Scan: Scan made it to the final four of the MDC and recently won a tournament in Virginia. I like this team’s toughness and willingness to play anybody anywhere. They also have one of the best coaches in the region.

6. Team Final: The MDC runner-up uses a physical style to frustrate opponents. The loss a close to #2 Team Nelson in the finals of the MDC but went on to knock off #10 NJABC for the title at the Never Nervous Invitational.

7. Philly Select: I love some of the pieces on this squad. Their guard play is tremendous and they have the rugged big men that can cause problems on the blocks. They are a team many don't want to see at the Nationals.

8. Team Underrated: The boys from Long Island lost to Team Nelson in the semifinals of the MDC. They have been close but have not crossed over the championship rope since their title at the Boston Massacre.

9. Westchester Hawks: I saw the Hawks up in Massachusetts and they have the talent to make some noise. Their guard play is good and they seem to understand how to share the rock. I just need to bring out the killer instinct to put teams away while also raising their level of play.

10. Team NJ ABC: The smallest squad in the region made it the finals of the Never Nervous Invitational. The have one of the best guard attacks in the Northeast but they will need to add some size before they go to Memphis at the end of the month.