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2010 Hoop Mountain Super Week II Recap

July 9, 2010 Columns No Comments

EASTON, Mass. – The busy month of July begins largely with individual player camps, and for us that started at Stonehill College with Hoop Mountain Super Week II. A pretty good group of players were present, and the evening games on a couple of evenings allowed for a good look at some players. We take a look at some of them below.

Tavon Allen (6’7″ Sr. SF, New Haven (CT) Worcester Academy) He had a very good spring, and it looks like he’s picking up right where he left off. An all-star selection here, he got many buzzing on Wednesday with a dunk he threw down, but he did much more than that, notably a variety of runners that included one from a very tough angle. High-major minus prospect.

Brandyn Benson (5’11” Sr. PG, Hamden (CT) Career HS) This point guard played strong, which gives him a chance in light of his size although his body isn’t there yet. He drove and finished while getting fouled, later knocked down a three-pointer and overall played well in a couple of games.

Rohan Brown (6’5″ Sr. SF-PF, Hartford (CT) East Catholic HS) A plus athlete, he’s shown over the spring that he can get things done near the basket, and he did some of the same here as he rebounded at both ends and got a couple of stickbacks along the way. But he also showed better ball skills and even knocked down a three-pointer, generally showing more wing ability than he did before. If he can continue to do that, it’s not inconceivable that a low Division I program might take a chance on him.

Dennis Clifford (6’11” Sr. C, Bridgewater (MA) Milton Academy) As often happens at events like this, the BC commit didn’t get the ball nearly enough to be effective at the offensive end. He did show his touch shooting the ball, while working relentlessly to get some post position but not getting the ball there often.

Kris Dunn (6’3″ Jr. PG-SG, Oakdale (CT) New London HS) Thought to be one of the next stars in his travel program, he has some clear physical gifts that were on display. He’s plenty athletic, was able to drive and dish on the break, and even showed some range with his jump shot.

Jared Fay (6’3″ Sr. SG, Lynn (MA) Brimmer & May School) Long known for his shooting, the big thing he showed here is that he’s continued to improve his game off the dribble. Since he’s not very athletic, he’s not going to impress many with that aspect of his game, but it’s clear he’s worked hard on being more than just a shooter and finishing near the basket. A very good student, he’ll likely end up at a solid academic Division II school.

Kuran Iverson (6’9″ So. SF-PF, Hartford (CT) Northwest Catholic HS) Simply put, he was the best player in the camp, which isn’t too surprising considering he was the most talented by a good margin. But on Tuesday night, he played like it, as he scored on a turnaround jumper, later scored on a wide variety of drives and transition plays in addition to a few stickbacks, and once he did that some jumpers fell. He also showed that he can own the boards when he wants to and can block some shots coming from the weak side.

Cedric Kuakamensah (6’7″ Sr. PF, Worcester (MA) North HS) A post player with a good frame and mature body, he’s always had a good motor and was productive here. He got his share of rebounds, in part from being active, and showed a few nice things at the offensive end like a mid-range jumper off the catch and a very nice pass to a cutter later on for an assist.

Gabas Maldunas (6’8″ Sr. PF, Plymouth (NH) Holderness Academy) An unknown prior to this camp, he won’t be off the radar of many college coaches for long if his play here is any indication. He has some physical maturity but certainly isn’t there yet, and is a little more athletic than he might look. Solid fundamentally, he defended well on the post, rebounded and was often around the ball, and at the offensive end was just solid as he moved well without the ball and did well to help his team in an unspectacular fashion.

Samir McDaniels (6’3″ Sr. SG, Roxbury (MA) New Mission School) He won’t jump out at you with physical gifts or great skills in any one area, but he has an uncanny knack for making plays and being around the ball, which happened here. He scored while fouled a few times, got offensive boards, stole an inbound pass and scored, drove and found teammates, and took lots of contact. In short, he showed the feel for the game and toughness that make him so effective, and it’s possible a low Division I program may take a chance on him.

DaShawn Murphy (6’4″ Sr. SG-SF, Wallingford (CT) Choate Rosemary Hall) A wing with a good body, his play didn’t leap out at you but you couldn’t watch his team and not realize he was a factor. He finished near the basket and knocked down a long range shot along the way, generally scoring in flow.

Ike Ngwudo (6’5″ So. SF-PF, Baldwin (NY) Milton Academy) Promising young forward is a baby physically and it showed, as there were some plays showing that he needs to get stronger. But there’s a lot to like, as he hit a nice mid-range jumper off the dribble and looks like he could be a combo forward if he grows more.

Ryan Romich (6’5″ Sr. SG-SF, West Groton (MA) Vermont Academy) An all-star selection, this solid system player had a nice all-around showing. He scored in several ways, which he’s always been capable of doing, including a couple of times when he backed a smaller defender down for a close basket.

Imoh Silas (6’8″ Sr. PF, Plymouth (NH) Holderness Academy) With his play here, he continued to emerge as an excellent defensive post player as he blocked shots and rebounded often in addition to contesting any chances near the basket or against his man. The offense still needs work, but the way he’s defending alone should get him some good looks as a high-major minus/mid-major plus prospect.

Tarik Smith (6’0″ Jr. PG, Bronx (NY) St. Paul’s School) It was a good couple of nights for this point guard, as he showed that he has some quickness and can explode past his man in the open floor. He showed a little range on his jump shot and also turned a steal into a layup another time.

Jacquil Taylor (6’8″ So. PF, Cambridge (MA) Rindge & Latin School) He still has a good ways to go, but there were some things to like here. His body is maturing some, but most importantly, he was more aggressive on offense, though he still tries to score on the post by doing too much in one motion, and he also made some better outlet passes off defensive rebounds.

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