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May 9, 2011FORT WAYNE, Ind. - During the course of the weekend, Jameel McKay and TP Elite captured the attention and respect of anybody who watched. However, they fell just short of a title, dropping an overtime tilt to Adam Woodbury and the All-Iowa Attack in the 17U finals. Meanwhile, All-Ohio swept the 16U and 15U divisions.
Sunday notables at Spiece
Adam Woodbury, C, All-Iowa Attack- It was a very nice weekend for the seven-footer from Iowa. He and point guard Marcus Paige work really well together in the pick and roll and he is getting stronger. Around the rim he's doing less unsure pivoting and more attacking the basket and playing to his size.
Jameel McKay, SF/PF, TP Elite- You don't always know how he manages to get things done, but the 2011 forward is one productive dude. He has a nose for the ball, can score against bigger and smaller guys and plays hard. If he ends up in junior college next year as it looks like he may need to, it will not be a surprise to see him emerge as one of the top jucos in the country two years from now.
Deonte Burton, SF, TP Elite- Watching TP Elite play, it's hard not to think back to the way the GC Ballers used to play when Paul Harris was playing the wing for them. Like Harris, Burton is a powerful and athletic kid who plays with extreme toughness and for his team. The sophomore excels in transition and at breaking down his defender one on one and making a play at the rim for himself or somebody else.
Mike Gesell, PG/SG, All-Iowa Attack- Gesell is as steady as a rock for his team and highly dependable. He will run the point and not make mistakes, can knock down some jumpers and is a big effort guy. Indiana Elite mounted a huge comeback against the All-Iowa Attack in the semis and it was Gesell who settled things down and made key plays to get the win.
Ron Patterson, SF, Indiana Elite- Right now, Patterson is best as a transition finisher and is a bit of a streaky jump shooter. However, you can always count on the Indiana commit to play outstanding perimeter defense. Capable of playing with physicality, he makes guys work to get theirs.
Marc Loving, PF/SF, All-Ohio 16's- A thin guy who is best facing the rim, Loving is lacking in strength and it seems sometimes in confidence. When he catches between the foul line and three point line he's very quick to the rim, can pull-up for shots or makes good passes to cutters. Ohio State pledge sometimes defers to others and added strength should help him be more aggressive around the rim.
Jaylon Tate, PG, Meanstreets 16's- It's been a really good spring for Tate. A true one who also has some scoring pop, Tate's biggest asset is that he's got great size for a point guard. He's getting stronger and has a nice first step. According to Tate, Xavier, Northwestern, Illinois, Purdue, Marquette, Ohio, Michigan, Providence, Tennessee, DePaul and others have taken notice.
Kendrick Nunn, SG, Meanstreets 16's- The 6-foot-3 shooting guard continues to play well each time he takes the court. Some kids just look like they are having more fun than the other guys and he's one of them. He probably is since he's usually dominating his man on both sides of the ball.
Jack Gibbs, PG, Ohio Varsity 16's- A tough 5-foot-10 sophomore, Gibbs is easy to like. Both competitive and skilled, he runs a team with confidence and his teammates follow his lead and instruction. Scores the ball pretty well for a little guy on top of what he does as a playmaker.
Final notes and observations from Spiece
At the end of the day, Kevin Ferrell has a level of quickness and explosiveness that maybe no other point guard in 2012 has. Yes he's got to cut down the turnovers, but the guy is somebody that will have some errors because of how eager he is to try and create a play. Ferrell can stay in front of just about anybody defensively and his pull-up jumper will always be an asset. The debate as to whether Bronson Koenig is best suited to run the point, play the two or be utilized as a combo guard is already setting up. The 6-foot-2 sophomore does have very good vision and is particularly effective as a passer in transition. However, he's also pretty dangerous playing off the ball as a guy who can knock down shots and utilize the bounce a bit. 2014 Indiana pledge James Blackmon finished up having himself a pretty good weekend. Most likely a little more suited to play the two, the crafty Blackmon is a high level jump shooter who can surprise with his finishing on the break. 2013 wing Aaron Jackson of Ohio Varsity had some nice moments on Sunday. The 6-foot-5 small forward was a nice compliment to point guard Jack Gibbs.
Trailing by one against the Michigan Mustangs with under 20 seconds to go, TP Elite had a simple play, "Take him A.C.!". Sophomore guard Anthony Carroll responded to the call and easily blew by a defender to get to the rim for the game winning bucket. A smallish two guard, the Wauwatosa (Wisc.) East product can really attack off the dribble. Damarion Geter of the Shining Stars is a good looking mid-major prospect on the wing. At 6-foot-6, Geter is a long, slashing and attacking athlete who is looking to punish the rim as often as possible. A skilled and versatile guy who figures to end up a big target for MAC programs is Evan Bradds of C-Biz. The 6-foot-6 forward makes faceup jumpers, can take big guys off the dribble and is a fairly springy finisher around the rim. Finally, there's another 2014 perimeter playmaker who will need to be watched closely in 6-foot-2 combo guard DeAngelo Russell. A product of Louisville (Kent.) Central, Russell is a quick and explosive athlete who can really create offense in one on one situations. He plays on the All-Ohio 15 and under team and easily looks to have high major potential.