With nearly 10 division one prospects in action, there was no shortage of star power as the likes of Isacc Miles, Steve Moore, Dominique Johnson, Ryan Jehle and several others were doing their thing.
THURSDAY NIGHT STANDOUTS
Isacc Miles - After notching a qualifying score on the ACT earlier this winter, Miles has been one of the more highly sought after guards in the country. The 6-2 senior at Bishop Miege looked good during a 15 point, nine assist outing in an easy win over Topeka (KS) Washburn rural. A solid combo guard, Miles has been noted for his ability to score via the dribble drive or jumper. It was his PG skills that stood out on Thursday as he was more than happy to feed a very hot Chris Combs for several long jumpers.
Chris Combs - The 6-1 junior WG at Bishop Miege has struggled at times this winter due to a bum ankle. He looked plenty healthy on Thursday night though as he was smoking jumpers from all over the field en route to an effortless 24 points. He’s one of the city’s premier shooters from the perimeter and a bouncy athlete in transition. Furman has already offered and the next step for him is to improve his ball handling and show that he can play some point as well.
Ryan Jehle - After signing with Missouri State in the Fall, the 6-5 combo forward is having himself an impressive senior campaign. He abused Rockhurst for 31 points with his smooth shooting stroke and powerful inside game. He’s got long arms, a terrific feel for the game and has hit the weights to bolster his inside game. As one of the leading scorers in the city, he’s making a strong case for All-Metro honors as the season progresses.
Conner Teahan - As predicted in the pre-season, the 6-5 junior WG/WF from Rockhurst has had a breakout campaign this winter. He’s very athletic in the open court and will rise above the crowd for towering jams, but it is his picturesque stroke from deep that has earned him a lot of attention. He was hot early from deep but cooled off during the second half before finishing with 20 points. The crowd watching him featured two Creighton staffers, including head coach Dana Altman. Altman was also there to see Miles.
Steve Moore - Even though he only scored six points in a defensive struggle, the youngster continues to make a name for himself. The 6-8 lefty BF from Truman had a challenge on his hands in the form of North Kansas City’s 6-7 BF Cory Fennix. Fennix, one of the most electric athletes in the city, had been on a scoring tear of late but Moore completely shut him down. He runs the court extremely well, blocks shots, rebounds and has been taught the fundamentals of the game. What really sets him apart from other young big men is that the sophomore already plays each possession like it’s his last and he’s always going full speed. He drew a crowd that included Altman and Missouri assistant coach Melvin Watkins.
Edriss Floyd - Moore’s teammate at Truman, Floyd is a 6-2 combo guard who can get his offense off the dribble. Perhaps most impressive about the senior’s game is that he’s been willing to sacrifice some of his scoring in order to get others involved. Once labeled selfish by some, he’s embraced the team game and has taken his talent to another level. He’s probably going to end up at junior college next year, but will certainly be recruited on the division one level after two years in junior college.
Dominique Johnson - As it stands, Johnson and Raytown (MO) South senior PG Roderick Pearson are locked in a head to head race for Metro player of the year honors. The 5-10 PG from Kansas City (MO) Lincoln Prep is a jet with the ball, breaks defenders down off the dribble and makes clutch plays late in games. He’s a much improved shooter and confident leader who broke Liberty’s hearts late in a sparkling 24 point effort.
Marcus Denmon - As expected, the quick 6-2 combo guard has emerged as one of the premier sophomores in the city and he showed why again against Liberty. Domo Johnson’s backcourt partner at Lincoln Prep, Denmon went off for 21 points in LP’s victory. As much as his ability to score off the bounce and hit tough hanging jumpers catches your attention, it is his defensive ability that really sets him apart. He’s got arguably the quickest hands in the city and is nearly impossible to lose as an on the ball defender.
MORE NOTES FROM THURSDAY
Lincoln Prep’s victory over host Liberty at the Liberty tournament set up probably the most highly anticipated game of the season. The 15-0 Tigers ranked #1 in the KC Area small class will take on the area’s #2 rated big class team, 14-2 Raytown South, in what is sure to be a slug fest and a great ball game. There won’t be a shortage of athletes on the floor in this one and those who can’t make it out to Liberty will be able to catch the game live on Metro Sports.
It isn’t just the Johnson and Denmon show at Lincoln Prep, seniors Brandon Coleman, Demarco Cosby and Greg Smith all play vital roles in the team’s success. All of these guys are going to be playing college ball somewhere next season.
Cory Fennix provides the inside power for Jim Hinrich’s North Kansas City team, but it is guard Brandon Coleman who is the most vital to their success. When the 6-1 combo guard is dialed in from deep he can be as dangerous a scorer as there is in the metro. He was good for 24 on Thursday and could end up on the Division One level if he plays his cards right. Either way, he’s a talented kid and one of the most underappreciated players in Kansas City.
He isn’t anywhere near a finished product yet, but Liberty freshman Shaun Adams has emerged as one of the top freshman in the city. He’s not a big scorer yet, but the tools are there for the smooth 6-5 wing.
Finally, Cavel Witter of Ruskin may be the most fearless player in the city. At least when it comes to shot selection. The 5-10 combo guard is willing to let it fly from anywhere at any time and he’s a high scorer who will let you know about it. He was good for 23 in Ruskin’s lopsided victory setting up a battle with Truman’s Edriss Floyd this evening. The duo are perhaps the premier trash talkers in the city so you know it is going to get interesting when they lock horns. …
Schools in the gym- Bradley, Creighton, Missouri.
- Total teams seen - 160.
- Total games watched - 96.
- Total miles traveled - 10,846.