Recap of 2021 Illinois Spot-Lite Fall Classic!!!!!!
Another year, another September, another Illinois Spot-Lite Fall Classic held at Plainfield Central High School, Plainfield, Illinois. Larry Butler does a great job with the event every year. Thanks for having me out as he's a long time friend of mine, as well as others. Mentions also go out to Sean Reed, Ivona Pawlowski, and Greg Bayer. The event was played in memory of legendary Illinois High School Coach Wayne McClain. Here's a headline from his passing: https://www.peoriapublicschools.org/site/default.aspx?PageType=3&DomainID=9&ModuleInstanceID=24446&ViewID=6446EE88-D30C-497E-9316-3F8874B3E108&RenderLoc=0&FlexDataID=33959&PageID=21749. This event had some very good basketball, and some breakout players. Here's a synopsis of some of the action.
Title Game: Leo(Chicago) took the title with a victory over Oak Park River Forest. Classic MVP Class of 2023 Tyler Smith(6'0") took over late in the game with some nice drives and finishes at the rim. The Catholic League Powerhouse looks like they are poised to make another run at a Class A State Title. He was helped by Class of 2023 classmates Jakeem Cole, and Jarrod Gee Jr. Possible preseason Top 25 team in Big Tim's poll.
All Tournament Team:
Tyler Smith, Leo(Chicago)- MVP was consistently on point all weekend, scoring on drives to the baket and three point shots. Showed leadership at every turn during their 7 game run to the Championship.
Sam Lewis, Oak Park River Forest- 6'5" Class of 2023 guard would have been MVP if his team would have won. He scored from three point range along with attacking the basket and finishing at the rim. He had three of the nastiest dunks of the weekend, posterizing all three in different games. He is #10 on Big Tim's rankings in his class for Illinois and played like it all weekend.
Jaybari Moore, Bogan(Chicago)- 6'2" Class of 2022 jack of all trades guard did it all over the weekend. He scored from all three levels of the floor consistently. Played hard nosed defense that resulted in more than a few steals. Big time sleeper prospect in the Chicago Public League. Will get Red South/Central opponents fits this season.
Chris Hammonds, Lincoln Park(Chicago)- 6'3" Class of 2022 guard was scoring from all over the court as well. Hit some big time threes including the game tying one against Bogan(Chicago), then clinched it with 5 free throws in overtime. Sneaky athleticism for the skinny guard. Colleges need to get in on this young man like yesterday.
Davonte Hall, Hyde Park(Chicago)- Class of 2022 Thornton Fractional North(Lansing) transfer guard was consistently scoring while running the team at the same time. Keeps coming at you on both ends of the court. Will be interesting to see how he does in the Chicago Public League this season.
Nolan Sexton, Evergreen Park- Class of 2024 5'11" guard was a three point sniper all weekend. He hit at least three in every game his team played. They did not do well as a team , but he was hitting 25 and 30 foot three point shots consistently. Will be interesting to se how he grows as a prospect.
Darrion Baker, Hillcrest(Country Club Hills)- Class of 2023 6'7" wing is a versatile big man. Was injured plagued at St Rita(Chicago) but is getting a new start with the Hawks. Is healthy and ready to show the ability he showed earlier in his career. He scored from three, posted up on the block, made good passes from the block and bringing the ball up the floor on the break. Rebounded at a high rate all weekend. Look for a breakout year from him.
Zack Royster, Lindbloom(Chicago)- Class of 2022 6'6" forward was a force in the paint all weekend with nasty dunks, strong post ups on the block, and rebounding on both ends of the court. He did attempt some step out three point shots but didn't make any when I saw him. Another Chicago Public League sleeper prospect that small colleges need to get in on.
Ethan Ivan, Batavia- Class of 2022 6'7" forward exploded for 35 points on Sunday vs Hyde Park(Chicago). He scored in a variety of ways, threes, drives to the basket, and posting up on the block. Big time scorer.
Ethan Kizer, Metamora- Class of 2023 6'7" wing is a high riser. White man can indeed jump. He had at least four nasty dunks on Saturday vs Phillips(Chicago). Rebounds the ball on both backboards and changes ends of the court with a lot of quickness. I would love to see him step out and shoot a few more threes, but has a chance to be a top prospect in Illinois.
Jaden Smith, Lincoln Park(Chicago)- Class of 2024 6'9" forward was a game changer on Saturday. He scored on the block with spins and finishes over his right shoulder. Protected the rim with more than a few blocked shots. Hit the defensive boards along with scoring on step out three point shots. Future national prospect.
Jakeem Cole, Leo(Chicago)- Class of 2023 5'11" guard hit a bunch of threes over the weekend along with attacking the rim. Great guard combination for the champs with tag team partner Tyler Smith. Pressured the basketball on defense to create turnovers with steals and deflections.
Terrion Langston, Bogan(Chicago) 5'10" guard, Class of 2022
Evan Jackson, DeLaSalle(Chicago) 6'6" forward, Class of 2023
Tyler Swanson, Metamora 6'3" wing, Class of 2023
Tre Jones, Longwood(Chicago) 6'1" guard, Class of 2022
Jarrod Gee Jr, Leo(Chicago) 6'5" wing, Class of 2023
Rodney Murphy, Oak Park River Forest 6'3" guard, Class of 2023
Joshua Pickett, Aurora(West) 6'4" guard, Class of 2024
Ty Rogers, Aurora(West) 6'7" forward, Class of 2022
Note: All-Tournament was supposed to be 10 players, I decided to put 12( hope you don't mind Mr. Butler).