"Big Red Machine" Takes Home The Prize
The 12U Division of Basketball Spotlight was competitive wire to wire. Some usual suspects showed and some fresh faces emerged. We would like to honor some of the top coaches and players for their successful seasons.
2011 Basketball Spotlight 12U Award Winners
Team Of The Year: Team IZOD
The Big Red Machine wrapped things up by winning the Grand Championship at Summer Slam. You can also add the AC Showcase, NJ State title and MDC Gold Ball to their list of accomplishments. They finished #12 in the country at the 12U Nationals.
Player Of The Year: Nate “The Great” Pierre-Louis (Team IZOD)
Pierre-Louis ended the Spotlight season by nailing the game winner at Summer Slam. He faced all sorts of defenses during the year and still managed to put up enormous numbers. During the AAU Nationals he showed the country what he was made of. Next season we will try to 3peat as POY.
Coach Of The Year: Frantz Pierre-Louis (Team IZOD)
He towers over his squad like John Thompson Sr. and earns the same respect as the legendary coach. Pierre-Louis guided his crew through deep waters and took home several crowns. He also will be chasing as 3peat as he tries to win his third Team of the Year crown.
Most Outstanding Player: Jaecee “Mayweather” Martin (CBC)
No one on this level captivated crowds like “Mayweather”. His sharp handle and crisp moves broke down defenders from all over the country. At times he seemed to toy with the competition with grace and flair. During the Super Showcase it was no doubt who was the top performer of his class.
Best Playmaker: Ty’shon Alexander (CB Spiders)
Alexander got the nod because of his ability to create for himself or teammates. He makes the difficult plays seem very easy while scoring, rebounding and dishing the pill. He led the Spiders to a NC State Crown, Converse Elite title, Spotlight CB Spiders crown and a #10 finish in the country.
Most Dominant Force: Jordan Riley (NC Rising Prospects)
Riley was a force to be reckoned with all season but showed his full arsenal at the Super Showcase. The up north crowd was amazed with his size, agility, touch and ability to make plays. His name rings bells all around the country and his stock should only go higher in the coming years.
Best Prospect: Kody Riley (Cali Styles):
The 6’7 Riley landed in NJ and took the Clash For The Cup by storm. He dominated his age group (12U) and was a factor on the 14U level. His soft touch from the outside, handle and quickness along the baseline reminds me of a young Rodney Rogers during his Wake Forest days. (Youtube Him)
Best Shooter: Aaron Clarke (Team IZOD): Even though Clarke opened up more of his game he still nailed the open jumper when needed. He would launch shots during the contest or when it got crunch time. The lefty is a very confident marksman.
Most Improved: Chaylyn Martin (CBC):
At times Martin was CBC’s best offensive weapon. That still didn’t stop him from excelling at the other end of the floor. He’s a glue player and made some big plays during their successful season. Don’t be surprised if he turns into quite a prospect.
Newcomer Of The Year: Jatirious Smith (CB Spiders)
Smith was a shot in the arm for the Spiders. He dominated several tournaments while coming off the bench. He scored a double-double many times out and even controlled the paint on occasion at the AAU Nationals.
Best Defender: Ismail Charles (CBC)
Charles intimidated opponents in the paint by blocking shots and crashing the boards. He’s mobile enough to defend the wing and strong enough to hold down the post. As he develops don’t be surprised if he becomes a wing stopper.
Best Rebounder: Rooner Joseph (Team IZOD)
Rooner lived under the backboard and snatched everything in sight. His motor never stops and he doesn’t try to what he can’t do. He did work while being matchup against opponents that were much bigger.
Best Passer: Aaron Thompson (Team Takeover)
"Scissorhands" knows how to find teammates after carving up defenders. He sets the tempo well and distributes the rock at the right time. He guided his squad to a top 10 finish nationally.
Best Kept Secret: Shyheim Hicks (CT Elite)
This kid should be ready to explode very soon. He packs all the necessary attributes including size and explosiveness. He plays with a lot of energy but once the game slows down to him he will be a good prospect.