Columbus Super Scrimmage

10 Nov

Saturday afternoon at the USA Sports Academy in Columbus, twenty-eight of the top boys varsity basketball teams from around the Buckeye State met for a scrimmage session that featured some excellent competition. Columbus area Division I programs like Pickerington Central, Gahanna Lincoln, Northland, New Albany and Reynoldsburg were joined by non-local teams like Cleveland Shaker Heights, Dayton Thurgood Marshall, Cincinnati Hughes, Mansfield Senior, Dayton Stivers, Middletown and several other talented teams to highlight the day.

Seth Towns

Seth Towns

In quick, twenty minute, scrimmages the teams were constantly getting matched up against other squads, giving scouts in attendance a chance to see some of Ohio’s best players match up with one another. While several seniors who have already chosen a college, including Jae’sean Tate (Ohio State), Javon Bess (Michigan State), Evan Bailey (College of Charleston), Vince Edwards (Purdue) and Rosel Hurley (Kent State), all stood out, some under the radar seniors, and underclassmen, impressed as well.

Here’s a look at ten of the top performers that Triple Double Prospects evaluated in Columbus on Saturday…..

  • Derrick McKeithton – ’14 SG Columbus Northland: One of Ohio’s most talented seniors that flies under the radar, McKeithton is a versatile wing that can put up points in a hurry. The 6’2 shooting guard is highly athletic, plays with a motor, can knock down the open jumper and is a terror in transition. Some problems with attitude have limited McKeithton in the past, however, the senior guard showed up ready to compete and with a will to win on Saturday. With Northland likely to start the season as Ohio’s top ranked Division I team by the AP, look for McKeithton to be right at the top of the team’s scoring list along with senior guard Ty Hairston and sophomore Seth Towns.
  • Robert Caldwell – ‘14 PG Dayton Stivers: Caldwell’s younger brother, 2016 point guard Roderick, has gotten a lot of good publicity from this site lately. However, it was “Ra-Ra” who did the most damage on Saturday for Stivers, scoring at will from all three levels. The scoring point guard is a lefty with a smooth three-point stroke with deep range, and he loves to shoot the pull-up off of the crossover. Caldwell isn’t the quickest, but he changes direction fluidly and shows great touch around the basket with an ability to finish left-handed floating layups.
  • Avery Williams – ’14 PF Tri Valley: A powerfully built 6’5 combo forward, Williams is a flat out beast around the rim against high school competition. Playing on a varsity team that might be more talented than you would expect, Williams thrives at scoring on second chances, and also can get points in transition. He might lack ideal size for his natural position, which would be the face-up power forward, but he makes up for it nicely with raw strength, above average athleticism and both toughness and a motor.
  • Dymeire Finch – ’14 PG Columbus Walnut Ridge: Finch has seen time at both guard spots throughout his career, but he seems to have adjusted nicely to running the show for Walnut Ridge in his senior year. The 6’1 combo guard is a good scorer who likes to play in attack mode, and is also a more than reliable jump-shooter. Finch has size and excellent length at the point guard position, and should be a factor on the defensive end of the floor as well this season. He’s not the flashiest of guards, but he’s going to be one of the better seniors in the Columbus area this year.
  • Dwayne Chastain – ’14 SG Dayton Thurgood Marshall: The 6’0 Chastain has waited his turn at Thurgood Marshall, and now he’s ready to make a big impact in his senior year. Simply put, Chastain is one of the elite shooters in all of Ohio; showing both a quick release and uncanny accuracy from the three-point line throughout Saturday. By TDP’s count, Chastain started off by making seven out of his first nine three-point shots in two games we saw, before we admittedly lost count as he continued to knock in wide open shots. Playing alongside speedy senior ball handling guards RaChaun Martin and Davion Ashe, Chastain should be a specialist for the Cougars this year, and a big part of the team offense.
  • John Miller – ’15 C Columbus New Albany: After making a name for himself on the 16u AAU circuit with the Ohio Hoopsters, the 6’8 Miller appears poised for a breakout year as a junior. Playing alongside some athletic forwards in brothers Chris and Bryson London, Miller is able to control the paint defensively and is also a strong floor-runner in his own right. Miller can score in the post nicely against high school competition, and also has the ability to step into the high post and pass it to cutters. He’s still a little bit unknown, and has some developing to do still, but Miller should emerge as one of Ohio’s top big men in 2015 and a potential Division I prospect.
  • Seth Towns – ’16 SF Columbus Northland: Now that they’re sophomores, TDP expects the top prospects from the class of 2016 to stand out on the varsity level. Towns did that more so than any other sophomore on Saturday, playing as well as he ever has in front of our eyes. The 6’7 forward knocked down open three-pointers with consistency, showed some athleticism in the open court and did a much better job of producing points around the basket in the half-court setting. Towns’ offensive numbers might be somewhat inconsistent on a Northland team with so much scoring ability this season, however his ability to dominate games with an inside-outside scoring attack will be the key to the Vikings making a run at a Division I state title.
  • Matt Moyer – ’16 PF Columbus Gahanna Lincoln: The 6’7 Moyer is one of the more raw forwards starting on an excellent varsity team as a sophomore, however, he’s also one of the most promising. Moyer has good size and length to go with wide shoulders, and is an excellent athlete as a two-foot jumper. The sophomore plays with good energy on the court, and has show a willingness to take over the game on the glass. Offensively he’s capable of doing a little bit of everything, but will probably be best served as a floor spacer that can find backdoor dunks and transition baskets off of assists from Javon Bess and senior Manny Powell. Playing alongside another talented sophomore in 6’8 center Nick Ward, look for Moyer and Ward to form one of Ohio’s most formidable one-two punches on a very good Gahanna Lincoln team.
  • Malik Harrison – ’16 PF Columbus Walnut Ridge: Harrison is an intriguing athlete at 6’5 who can play inside or outside, as well as defend either forward position. A long and energetic forward that will rebound, defend, block shots from the weak-side and run the floor, Harrison was one of the more all-around productive forwards in attendance on Saturday, regardless of class Offensively, he’s capable of driving to score from the high post, can get second chance buckets and is also a reliable finisher in transition. With his size and athleticism, look for Harrison to pick up right where he left off last year as a major contributor for Walnut Ridge. Matched alongside another sophomore forward in Tarik Wight, look for Harrison and Wright to complement each other nicely as Harrison provides the athleticism and Wright the power and skill.
  • Tyus Ferguson – ’16 PG Columbus Groveport Madison: Ferguson has the look of a much more seasoned guard on Saturday, really doing a nice job of creating off the bounce for his team. The 5’11 sophomore has a good top gear of speed in the open court, but also changes speeds nicely with hesitation dribbles. Capable as a finisher or passer around the rim, Ferguson could be just the playmaker that Groveport Madison is looking for as they try and reassert themselves as one of the top programs in the Columbus area again. If Ferguson can prove to be a consistent decision maker, the sophomore guard could quickly become one of the better young floor generals in Ohio.
  • D.J. Tyree – ’16 PG Columbus Pickerington Central: Tyree also has the feel of a guard that has been around for a longer time. The 6’0 point guard is a good decision maker, defends the ball well in the full-court and is a capable shot-maker from the three-point line. Playing alongside athletic wings in Jalen Tate, Jae’sean Tate and junior Rodney Culver, as well as senior sharpshooter Connor Kern, look for Tyree to rack up assists at a high level in his sophomore campaign, before taking over as more of a scoring threat later in his career.
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