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2016 Jerry Tarkanian Classic: Day 3
by Dinos Trigonis
(December 17, 2016)

The 5th annual Jerry Tarkanian Classic is being held December 15-20, 2016 @ Bishop Gorman High School (Las Vegas NV) and surrounding area gyms.  80 high school boys squads (spread over 5 divisions) and 27 prep programs (National Division) are participating this year.

The quarter-finals were held on Saturday for all bracketed Divisions.

In Platinum Division Quarter-final I, it was Roosevelt (Eastvale CA) knocking off Crossroads (Santa Monica CA) 64-51 behind the offensive spark of Matt Mitchell (23 points) and Jemarl Baker (20 points).  Shareef O’Neal had 13 points for Crossroads.

In Platinum Division Quarter-final II, Chino Hills (CA) used a late 2nd-half spurt to pull past Bishop O’Dowd (Oakland CA) 87-77.  Gelo Ball and Melo Ball combined for 42 points and Eli Scott added 21 huge points to go along with a fantastic 19 boards while Oneyka Okongwu added 12 points and Phaquan Davis contributed 11 points.   BJ Shaw was terrific for Bishop O’Dowd – scoring a game high 26

points while Naseem Gaskin added 19 points and Elijah Hardy chipped in with 15 points.

In Platinum Division Quarter-Final III, Mater Dei (Santa Ana CA) survived a scrappy Salesian (Richmond CA) squad beating the Lions 58-46.  Justice Sueing had a team high 17 points for the Monarchs.

In Platinum Division Quarter-final IV, Bishop Gorman (Las Vegas NV) jumped on Westchester (Los Angeles CA) early and cruised the rest of the way for a 96-53 win over the Comets as Charles O’Bannon and Christian Popoola each scored 21 points.  Luis Rodriguez scored 21 points for Westchester and Harold Moore added 17 points.

Roosevelt will face Chino Hills this Monday at 4:00pm and Bishop Gorman will take on Mater Dei at 5:30pm in the Platinum Division semi-finals at the Orleans Arena in Las Vegas NV.  Both games as well as all remaining Tarkanian Classic contests will be live-streamed at Baller.tv

I’ve featured several top players in my first two daily reports.  Below, I focus on several more that made a statement on Day 3:


Marvin Bagley                     6’11”  2018   Sierra Canyon (Chatsworth CA)
Ultra-talented and versatile player had a team-high 18 points in Sierra Canyon’s 61-52 win over Centennial/Las Vegas NV.  Bagley may be the most talented junior big man California has seen since Crenshaw’s John Williams (Class of 1984).  Amazing soft scoring touch as well as impressive agility baseline to baseline.  Besides possessing tremendous all-around offensive skills, Marvin is also a great kid and excellent student.  Very real potential to be a future NBA Draft #1 pick.

Troy Brown                          6’6”     2017   Centennial (Las Vegas NV)

Oregon-bound Brown is the type of multi-skilled perimeter player that Dana Altman can utilize very effectively in the Pac 12.   Troy did all he could to keep Centennial within reach of Sierra Canyon Saturday night (scoring a game-high 21 points that included a monster slam off the bounce over Marvin Bagley) before the Bulldogs faded, losing to SC 61-52.  Great shot to be a 2017 McDonald’s All-American.

 BJ Shaw                               6’5”     2017   Bishop O’Dowd (Oakland CA)
Son of Lakers assistant coach and former NBA player Brian Shaw is one of the

most under-the-radar unsigned senior prospects in California.  In a huge Platinum Quarter-final game versus defending national champion Chino Hills, Shaw rose to the occasion (scoring a game-high 26 points) and served notice that he is likely to be mid-major or higher spring D-I recruit.  Shaw appeared to play always in control and his mid-to-long range jump shots seemed to always hit nothing but net. 

Matt Mitchell                        6’6”     2017   Roosevelt (Eastvale CA)
Strong combo-forward always plays tough and with a high motor.  Mitchell had 23 points including a thunderous dunk over Shareef O’Neal to lead Roosevelt to the W over Crossroads  and a berth in Monday’s Platinum semi-finals.  Mitchell (a Cal State Fullerton signee) is always active on the glass and can score through contact in the paint.

Bryce Hamilton                   6’4”     2018   Pasadena (Pasadena CA)
Fast rising 2018 combo guard is an excellent two-way player.  Lefty has a quick first step as well as a very legit perimeter stroke.  Hamilton started this tourney off with a 36 point outburst versus Faith Lutheran and followed it up on Saturday with a game-high19 points in a victory over  Bountiful/UT.

 Eli Scott                                6’5”     2017   Chino Hills (Chino Hills CA)
Loyola Marymount signee has proven to be a very valuable and often underappreciated key component of a Chino Hills squad whose current winning streak was extended to 44 games in its win over Bishop O’Dowd on Saturday.  Scott’s 21 points and 19 boards were big in helping Chino Hills survive O’Dowd’s quarter-final challenge, advancing the Huskies to Monday’s semi-final versus Roosevelt/Eastvale CA.

Oneyka Okongwu              6’9”     2019   Chino Hills (Chino Hills CA)
Dominating shot-blocker had his face-up jump shot working in a big win over Bishop O’Dowd – scored 12 points, grabbing 15 rebounds and racking up 3 blocks.

Cody Riley                           6’7”     2017   Sierra Canyon (Chatsworth CA)
UCLA-bound PF is a physical and rugged rebounder and interior scorer.  Scored 15 points in a  win over Centennial/Las Vegas NV.

Christian Popoola Jr.        6’4”     2017   Bishop Gorman (Las Vegas NV)
Strong and athletic combo-guard had 21 points in a win over Westchester/Los Angeles CA.  Committed to BYU but did not sign a letter of intent this Fall.

O’Shae Brissett                  6’8”     post.   Athlete Institute (Orangeville, ONT, Canada)
Syracuse-bound athletic forward is a regular visitor on the glass.

Remy Martin                        6’0”     2017   Sierra Canyon (Chatsworth CA)
Speed demon PG is a blur in transition.  Arizona State-bound playmaker can score in bunches.

Maka Ellis                             6’5”     2018   Sierra Vista (Las Vegas NV)
High-scoring off-guard with deep perimeter stroke.  Excellent student too.

Hunter Woods                     6’6”     2018   Muir (Pasadena CA)
One of the 2018 sleepers in the West has a nice blend of offensive skills.

Isaiah “Ice” Banks             6’2”     2017   Centennial (Las Vegas NV)
Quick and athletic combo-guard has a lethal pull-up jump shot.

Phaquan Davis                   5’10”  2019   Chino Hills (Chino Hills CA)

Very underrated PG is a very important piece of Chino Hills’ winning puzzle.  Excellent defender makes timely 3-point shots.

Mike Feinberg                     6’3”     2018   Sierra Canyon (Chatsworth CA)
Hustling guard has a very high basketball IQ and plays to win.  Terrific student too.

James Akinjo                       6’0”     2018   Salesian (Richmond CA)
Very quick PG can create for teammates off the bounce.

Assane Douf                       7’1”     2019   East (Denver CO)
Young but promising center has great size and plays hard on both ends of the floor.

Zim Agau                              6’6”     2018   Bishop Gorman (Las Vegas NV)
Very athletic forward is an excellent slashing scorer.

Ryse Williams                      6’3”     2017   Redondo Union (Redondo Beach CA)
Loyola Marymount bound WG with very accurate 3-point stroke.

Chance Michels                  6’2”     2019   Bishop Gorman (Las Vegas NV)
Tough point guard knows how to run a team and is a very underrated athlete.



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