19th Annual Riverside Brookfield Shootout Review!!!!
Updated: Jun 23
Another year complete of one of the best summer shootouts in the area. I would like to thank Riverside Brookfield Coach Mike Reingruber and his staff for the great hospitality. They had no problem with allowing me access to the players, pictures, and scoresheets. It is always a well run tournament and the convenience of all the gyms being so close to each other. Some of the things that happened this weekend.
College coaches: This was a live period and the coaches were out in full force from all NCAA Division levels. There were players that intrigued some of the coaches in attendance. There was a lot of talent in the gym, so much that the coaches had to make some tough choices on which games to watch. I had some tough choices myself. Thanks to the coaches that attended.
Two dribble mid range pull-up jumper is coming back:This was the biggest thing I noticed the entire weekend, more players with this in their arsenal and these players got great lift on these jumpers. Showed great touch and efficiency with this shot. These are some of the players that were elite in this area: Seniors Quentin Jones of Marian Catholic (Chicago Heights), Cameron Christie of Rolling Meadows, Xavier Suliaman of Oak Lawn, Jakeem Cole of Rich Township (Park Forest), Jordan Pickett of Belleville East, Niko Abusara of Benet Academy (Lisle), Antwan Robinson, East St Louis and junior Meyoh Swansey of Romeoville. It's great to see this part of basketball making a comeback.
Something I've never seen before and thought I've seen it all in basketball (apparently not):
5'9" senior guard Cordy Johnson of Michele Clark (Chicago) averaged 30 points for the weekend with a 40 point game. A team I won't name put box and one defense on him....IN A SUMMER SHOOTOUT!!!!! WOW!!!!!! The epitome of respect, but in this environment it's puzzling.
Players that blew up this weekend: There were a couple that took their games to another level and the scholarships followed:
Darrion Baker, Hillcrest (Country Club Hills): 6'8" wing has been playing well all Spring for Team Rose but took his game to a new level in this event. He was more assertive than in the past, seems like he's regained his confidence that he had since injuries ruined his freshman and sophomore years of high school. Scoring on all three levels, rim protecting, and being aggressive on the backboards. I counted at least 6 scholarship offers this past weekend, could have been more. I look for a lot more to come in the next few weeks. He'll have a lot of options after this summer.
Drew Scharnowski, Burlington Central (Hampshire): I did not see him play all weekend, but heard a lot of chatter about how he just dominated all weekend. 6'8" wing showed that versatility is his calling card and showed the entire arsenal this weekend. Multiple division one scholarship offers have come from his play over the weekend. This young man is going to have me drive all the way to Hampshire a couple of times this coming winter.
Could there be a new #1 in Class of 2023?
Cameron Christie, Rolling Meadows: 6'6" point guard has already been mentioned in this writeup for his mid range pull-up game, but he showed his scoring all over the court. He can get any shot he wants at the high school level. He's taken the momentum of his great play in the Spring and brought it to Riverside Brookfield this weekend. He showed improved athleticism with a couple of two handed dunks on attacks to the rim. Averaged around 30 points a game for the weekend and is challenging my #1 Owen Freeman of Moline. Will be great to see how far his game grows.
Kings of Bounce: There were a lot of high risers in the gym this weekend. Here are a few of them:
Macaleab Rich, East St Louis: 6'6" senior wing had a couple of vertical dunks off two feet, one in traffic vs Joliet West on a nasty two handed follow-up jam. He had a nasty vertical dunk off two feet with a two handed dunk on the head of 6'9" junior Jaden Smith of Kenwood Academy(Chicago). A threat to dunk on someones head at anytime.
Josh Thomas, Evanston Township: 6'5" senior wing has some bounce himself with a couple of two handed dunks, and of the one handed variety. Look for some exciting plays this coming season in Beardsley Gym in Evanston.
Hunter Duncan, Evanston Township: 6'2" senior point guard may not look the part of a kid with some bounce, but he's going to surprise some unsuspecting defenders this coming season. Beardsley Gym is going to be an exciting place.
Niko Abusara, Benet Academy (Lisle): 6'5" senior wing will have the gym bouncing at Benet this coming season. Not only is his mid range game excellent, but he's a slasher/attacker high riser. Another one that may not look the part, but you'll be regretting it when he puts you on a poster.
Calvin Robins, Kenwood Academy (Chicago): 6'6" junior wing is another one that may not look the part with his goggles on, but he dunks on you one handed, two handed, off follow up jams. He runs the floor hard and plays hard, also has a three point jumper now. Dangerous future.
Austin Kulig, Andrew (Tinley Park): 6'6" wing had a couple of nice two handed hammer dunks on drives to the basket this weekend. He can also hit catch and shoot threes and off the bounce.
Best shooter in the state: Some great outside shooters in Illinois but I would say Jack Fiegen a 6'4" senior guard for New Trier (Winnetka) is the best. He hit 6 threes in one game here. I call him Mr Automatic once he gets space to shoot. He can also attack the basket now and score at the rim. He had one drive and nasty two handed dunk in a game. Buy stock college coaches.
Fabulous incoming freshman: 6'1" point guard Jason Culture Jr of Rich Township (Park Forest) is a young man I talked about as a day 1 standout. Bright future as he can already finish through contact attacking the rim at his age. He has not played a regular high school game yet. He also has a nice lefty three point stroke. One to look out for.
Bryce Heard is as advertised: Rated the top sophomore in the state Bryce Heard, a 6'5" guard from Kenwood Academy (Chicago) more than lived up to the billing. He showed excellent scoring on all three levels, and finishes above the rim. Is also a good defender and plays hard all the time.
Jeremiah Fears of West (Joliet) will have something to say about that sophomore rating. 6'0" point guard is not only a floor general, but a great long range three point shooter. He's also fearless (no pun intended), attacking the basket and finishing. Add a nice floater game and he has it all for a guard. Averaged around 20 a game for the weekend.
Other stock risers:
Quentin Jones, Marian Catholic (Chicago Heights), 6'5" senior point guard is long, athletic and a two way player. Mid range shot has been mentioned, as well as drives and finishes at the rim.
Jaloni Johnson, Proviso East (Maywood) 6'3" senior guard is another three level scorer who can get whereever he wants on the court.
Justin McNair, Joliet West: 6'2" junior guard can get his own shot at the mid range and slashing to the basket. He has a chance to be a great second option on this team. Big time sleeper.
Aleks Alston, Kenwood Academy (Chicago): 6'8" sophomore wing is an extraordinary knockdown three point shooter who does not get many opportunities on this talented team. He does make the most of them by hitting a high percentage. One of the top young prospects in the state.
TaVariyuan Williams, Leo (Chicago): 6'5" junior wing can score on all three levels and has to play all over the floor for the Lions. Nice slashing ability that will have to do some rim protecting for his height challenged team.
Keyshawn Barfield, Lincoln Park (Chicago): 6'9" sophomore forward gets better by the day. Has a chance to be the best big man in his class when it's all said and done. Runs the floor, rebounds, and rim protects at a high level. He has a step out mid range jumper that is very effective.
Angelo Ciaravino, Mount Carmel (Chicago): 6'6" junior wing is the best prospect on the Caravan. He can do everything a wing is required to do. He hits threes, can attack off the bounce and finish at the rim. Rebounds at a high rate.
Tyler Van Gorp, New Trier (Winnetka): 6'10" senior center rarely played last season. It's hard at his size to be a sleeper but colleges are starting to awake to this young man. He runs the floor, is a rim protector, can score with his back to the basket, and step out to hit threes.
Mekhi Lowery, East (Oswego): 6'6" senior guard can do it all from that position. Hits threes,, slashes to the basket and scores, rebounds, assists, versatility is his calling card. Potential to be a great two way player.
Ray Austin, Rich Township (Park Forest) : 6'1" senior guard was a big time scorer for the Raptors last season. Slashes to the basket and can hit mid range jumpers. He's getting better from three point range and as a defender.
Meyoh Sawnsey, Romeoville: 6'2" junior. guard has already been mentioned as a mid range marksman, but can hit threes and attack the basket to score with either hand. Defends every wing position and is becoming a known commodity in his class.
Other top players I saw:
Alex Jackson, Belleville East: 6'5" senior forward, big time inside force on both ends.
Brayden Fragbemi, Benet Academy (Lisle): 5'10" senior point guard ,floor general, who can hit the three.
Mekhi Cooper, Bolingbrook: 6'2" senior point guard, excellent three point shooter who now can run a team.
Ahmad Henderson II, Brother Rice (Chicago): 5'10" senior point guard, showed scoring chops this weekend with multiple 20 point games.
Cale Cosme, Brother Rice (Chicago) : 5'8" junior point guard is the ultimate floor general and tough. Low turnover, can hit threes, pass and get to any spot own floor he wants.
Jonas Johnson, DePaul College Prep (Chicago) :6'6" sophomore wing is a knockdown three point shooter off the catch.
Jack Reimer, North (Downers Grove): 6'7" junior forward is a nice low post player, rebounder who can step out and hit a three.
Finn Kramper, North (Downers Grove): 6'3" senior wing is a knockdown three point shooter off catch and shoot.
Prince Adams, Evanston Township: 6'5" senior wing scores on drives to the basket, and can hit a three.
Darshan Thomas, Fenwick (Oak Park): 6'5" junior wing was not allowed to play varsity last season, but has a versatile inside/outside game.
JJ Hernandez, Glenbard North (Carol Stream): 6'6" junior wing big time slasher extraordinaire that can finish at the rim.
Luuk Dusek, Glenbard West (Glen Ellyn): 6'1" senior guard knockdown three point shooter especially off the catch.
Logan Brown, Glenbard West (Glen Ellyn): 6'5" senior forward can score in the post off either shoulder, nice footwork, and a rugged rebounder on both ends.
Ryan Cohen, Glenbrook North (Northbrook): 6'3" senior guard is a knockdown three point shooter.
Matthew Moore, Hillcrest (Country Club Hills): 6'8" senior forward quick jumper for dunks and rebounds, rim protector, and change ends well.
Chris Riddle, Kenwood Academy (Chicago): 6'6" junior wing big bodied athletic wing who has improved on his slashing and three point shooting.
Tyler Smith, Leo Catholic (Chicago): 6'0" senior guard is a do it all player on both ends of the court who can score on all three levels.
Niklas Polonowksi, Lyons Township (LaGrange): 6'6" senior wing can shoot the three from any spot on the floor especially on catch and shoot.
JaKeem Cole, Rich Township (Park Forest): 6'0" senior point guard is a big time scorer who can do it on all three levels. Former Chicago Catholic League Player Of The Year.
Ian Militec, Rolling Meadows: 6'6" sophomore wing is a nice knockdown shooter from all over the court. Star of the future for the Mustangs.
Richard Barron, St Ignatius College Prep (Chicago): 6'5" senior wing showed more than a stand still three point shot this week. Did a lot of slashing and scoring as well as passes off the bounce.
Miles Rubin, Simeon Career Academy (Chicago): 6'9" senior forward showed he can take players off the bounce and a mid range pull-up jumper. Rebounds and rim protects at a high level.
Wes Rubin, Simeon Career Academy (Chicago): 6'7"senior wing showed slashing ability, passing, and rebounding this weekend.
Nojus Industraitis, St Rita (Chicago): 6'6" junior wing had a quiet weekend by his standards but still averaged in double figures. Still getting used to Mustangs offense.
Vincent Rainey, Thornton Township (Harvey): 5'8" point guard has more responsibility this year, not just a stand still three point shooter. Attacks the basket and hits teammates for open threes.
Josh Pickett, West Aurora: 6'5" junior point guard is a straight bucket averaged over 20 points a game this weekend. Scores at every level on the floor with efficiency.
Isaiah Giles, Westinghouse (Chicago): 6'0" senior guard is a quick, strong slasher scorer.
Damien Bolden, Westinghouse (Chicago): 6'2" junior guard is a big time knockdown three point shooter off the catch and shoot.
Marcus Pigrim, Whitney Young (Chicago): 6'3" senior guard did a lot of his scoring in the post this weekend. Had a 23 point game against Brother Rice.
Dalen Davis, Whitney Young (Chicago): 6'0" senior guard did some scoring along with assisting teammates this weekend.
David Douglas Jr, Christian (Yorkville): 6'4" senior point guard is a big time scorer on all three levels and gets ball to three point shooters in the shooting pocket. Young senior only 16 years old.
I didn't see every good player so some might have been left out only because I did not watch you play extensively. Peace to the creatures.