PITTSBURGH - Baltimore native Tariq Owens really came to play on Saturday. Also a pair of young…
Hoop Group Pitt: Day One
Temarcus Blanton, SG, Atlanta Xpress – A good athlete with long arms who can make shots, Blanton was the high scorer for Atlanta Xpress in their win. He got to the rim at will, showed great body control and strength finishing through contact, and also was able to knock in a few perimeter jumpers. Blanton is just beginning to get on the national stage and this was a good showing for him. Trayvon Reed, C, Atlanta Xpress – He is full of potential and dominated last year at this event. He blocked several shots and was definitely a force on defense with his length and athleticism. Rebounding wise he was solid, but at times he would lose the ball trying to secure it. Offensively he missed some easy buckets, and needed to be more assertive dunking the basketball, but for the most part he played down low and didn't float which was a good thing. Still a lot of room for improvement, but Reed does show flashes. Chris Chiozza, PG, Team Thad – Elite quickness and toughness, Chiozza was very good despite not having a great game shooting the basketball. He made enough shots to keep Team Thad in the game, and as usual was the engine that drove the squad, but he just couldn't quite keep it going with the outside shot. On defense his size doesn't limit his effectiveness because of how active he is. He probably deflected double digit passes, and had several steals. Marcanvis Hymon, PF/SF, Team Thad – The combo forward looked much more comfortable playing on the perimeter a year ago, and is very athletic. He got into some early foul trouble which limited his overall numbers, but still he was effective and found a way to really attack the glass against a taller frontcourt. Isaiah Whitehead, SG, Juice All-Stars – Whitehead as usual was scoring the ball at a high level. Now he didn't have his most efficient game, but a good athlete who knows how to get to the rim, Whitehead got his numbers and helped his team to a win. Devin Robinson, SF, Squires Richmond – Robinson has been more of the more under the radar wings in the country, but there is no doubt he will be one of the best as well. He has long arms, checks in at near 6-foot-7, is a good athlete, and hit several jumpers. As long as he is hitting his jump shot he is tough to deal with, and Robinson was doing just that in a blowout win. Christopher Jones, SF, Squires Richmond – Jones is an intriguing player. He can really get to the rim and has good size at about 6-foot-4, but he is a non-shooter. Still as a solid athlete who can handle and pass, Jones is someone who makes good things happen with the ball. Right now he actually plays a point guard some of the time, but his future home looks to be on the wing. Chinanu Onuaku, C, DC Assault – One of the best shot blockers in the class, Onuaku was excellent on the defensive end in the second half. Onuaku is not going to be someone who is ever capable of being a big time scorer, but he does have okay hands and will hit a mid-range jumper. His defense and rebounding has a place, now he just needs to continue to get stronger and be more consistent with his effort running the floor. Romelo Trimble, SG, DC Assault – Trimble has a lot of responsibility on this team and he took it upon himself to try and score. His shot was off, which is unusual, but he looked better off the dribble and is noticeably stronger. Trimble is developing into more of a point guard, but he is probably best as a scorer off the ball. He got good looks and created space nicely, just didn't have one of his typical games. Quentin Snider, PG, Louisville Magic – It was a balanced effort for the Magic in a win over DC Assault. Snider himself was just solid. The future Louisville Cardinal made a few shots, got his teammates involved and was solid on the defensive end. It wasn't a standout game for Snider by any means, but he did do what was needed to get a win and showed why he is so highly regarded. Derrick Jones, SF, We R 1 – The Philadelphia product was clearly a standout guy. At 6-foot-5 with length and big time athleticism, Jones was too much to handle in the second half. He got to the rim, his jumper looked good, and then finished with authority around the bucket. The sky is the limit for Jones, and there is no doubt he will be one of the highest risers in the class of 2015. Isaiah Whitehead mentioned Louisville, Syracuse, St. John's, UCLA, and Kentucky. Derrick Jones said Syracuse, Villanova, Rutgers, Xavier, and St. Joe's have been the schools most active in his recruitment. Isaiah Whitehead drew coaches from Louisville, St. John's, and Syracuse. Chris Chiozza had Kansas, Florida, Butler, Memphis, Florida State, North Carolina State, VCU, Clemson, and South Carolina. Trayvon Reed had head coaches from Maryland, Miami, and Georgia Tech watching.
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