Sooner than Later
Player of the Week
Trae Young 6’1 175 PG – Norman North 2017 (Oklahoma)
A week after exceeding 2,500 career points and making his commitment to Oklahoma, Young continues to put up big numbers like he has over the past two years. In Norman North’s first win he dropped 32 points and passed out 14 assists against Jenks. He followed up with 47 points, four rebounds, and seven assists defeating Sand Springs. Young has had a much accomplished high school career and senior year. Young is looking to win out to lead North to a second straight state title. You can watch him close out his high school career when he plays on national TV in the McDonald’s All-American Game and Jordan Brand Classic in the coming weeks.
Lindell Wigginton 6’2 180 PG – Oak Hill Academy 2017 (Iowa State)
Oak Hill Academy tallies three wins over the week while playing a long schedule, close to 40 games already. None of the opponents gave Oak Hill a challenge over the three games but Wigginton has been a big time scorer all season and this week he continued to do what he does best. He started with 19 points in the win against Bull City Prep. His biggest game came against Comenius with 41 points, eight rebounds, five assists, and three steals. He closed out the week scoring 26 points defeating Rock Creek Christian.
Xavier Tillman 6’8 250 PF – Grand Rapids Christian 2017 (Michigan State)
Tillman posted a double-double and triple-double in back to back games while leading Grand Rapids Christian to two wins. First, with 12 points and ten rebounds beating Wyoming. Then, 15 points, ten rebounds, and ten assists to defeat East Grand Rapids. Grand Rapids Christian only has one loss on the season and have been successful behind Tillman’s aggressive play.
Zion Williamson 6’6 240 SF/PF – Spartanburg Day 2018
Spartanburg Day went undefeated in the month of February. Williamson closes out the season the same way he started, posting exceptional numbers. His first game he finished with 37 points, eight rebounds, four assists, and three steals to beat Pee Dee. In the win over Trinity Byrnes, he scored 36 points and grabbed 14 rebounds. He got after it defensively as well recording four blocks and five steals. He closed out the season scoring 51 points to win the 2A State Title against Christian Academy who scored 51 points as a team.
Tre Jones 6’1 175 PG – Apple Valley 2018
Jones has been playing great over the past few weeks, filling the stat sheets in nearly every category. He just missed a triple-double in the win over Farmington with 12 points, nine rebounds, 11 assists, and seven steals. He achieved his triple-double against Eastview with 29 points, 16 rebounds, and 12 assists. Despite losing Gary Trent after transferring to Prolific Prep, Apple Valley remains nearly unbeatable only two losses on the season.
Chino Hills had two games over the week, winning the first against Long Beach Poly with a well-rounded contribution from the team: LiAngelo Ball scoring 17 points, Eli Scott scoring 22 points and grabbing 14 rebounds, LaMelo Ball with 26 points and 11 assists, and Onyeka Okongwu with 29 points and 16 rebounds. The next game, Chino Hills came away with a rare loss to Mater Dei in the CIF Southern Section Semifinals behind Justice Sueing’s 25 points and six rebounds. Bol Bol was also big with 14 points, 15 rebounds, and five blocks. LiAngelo and LaMelo posted 28 and 26 points respectively but shot an uncharacteristic combined 17-65 in the loss.
Under the Radar
McKinley Wright 6’0 165 PG – Champlin Park 2017 (Dayton)
Dayton’s incoming point guard had a strong week. First scoring 21 points in the win over Elk River. He followed up with a big 46-point outing while also grabbing 14 rebounds and passing eight assists to defeat De La Salle. Wright closed out the week with a 16 point scoring output to beat Spring Lake Park. Wright had a big summer that continued through the high school season. Although he’s only six-foot-tall, he’s a tough player who can lead a team.
Top 5 Players in the Underclassman All-American Game
1. Charles Bassey 6’10 230 PF/C – St. Anthony 2019
Bassey looks to be the top player on the roster thus far and a veteran to the game as he played in it last year in Indianapolis. The big man is currently recovering from a hand injury that has kept him on the sidelines over the past few games as well as the Basketball Without Borders Global Camp. Bassey’s ability on both ends of the floor gives him the top spot on the list.
2. Scottie Lewis 6’4 180 SG – Ranney 2019
Lewis brings his high level athleticism and exciting style to the event. He’s not only considered a top athlete in the 2019 class but in all of high school basketball. Lewis is more than a big time athlete, his well-rounded game positions him towards the top of his class.
3. James Wiseman 6’10 210 PF – Ensworth 2019
Wiseman doesn’t get quite as much praise as some of 2019’s big men: Charles Bassey, Vernon Carey, Balsa Koprivica, Chol Marial…at least not yet. Standing at 6’10 with a 7’4.5 wingspan combined with fluid athleticism and a strong skillset, Wiseman’s best days are very much ahead of him. Not to mention he doesn’t turn 16 for another month.
4. Bryan Antoine 6’4 170 PG/SG – Ranney 2019
Scottie Lewis isn’t Ranney’s only player in the event. Antoine will bring speed, scoring ability, and highlight plays to Atlanta. His ability to score from multiple spots on the floor and overall offensive repertoire makes him an easy decision to play in the game.
5. Christian Brown 6’6 200 SF/PF – AC Flora 2019
Brown’s high energy and athleticism will be on display in Atlanta. He’s got very good leaping ability especially off of one foot and attacks the rim on a consistent basis. The developing forward rounds out the list and should be a standout in the game.