The Ninth Annual Nor Cal Summer Tip Off was held Friday and Saturday July 13-14 at Las Positas College, Mountain House High School, Livermore High School and the Livermore Community Center. Fifty -five teams and approximately 500 players from throughout the West Coast participated.
Since tournament director and noted California boys’ basketball analyst Gerry Freitas was there from 8:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. on both days, and Prep2Prep only have coverage on Saturday morning and afternoon, the majority of these evaluations on the players that caught his and our attention in the 17U division were done by Freitas. We have excluded the 2018 graduates but included some players from out of state so Prep2Prep readers can learn a little about them. A couple actually played for Northern California teams.
A total of 77 players made the various lists starting with the top four players that were awarded Cream of the Crop on down to Best of the Rest, Other Solid Prospects to Consider, Honor Roll and Honorable Mention.
Cream of the Crop
6-8 SF Isaiah Hawthorne of Tracy 2019 (Team Arsenal 17 Elite)
Hawthorne is a long and athletic wing who is very talented and does things most guys can’t do. He’s a very nice all-around scorer who does it at all three levels. He is also an adequate rebounder. But the big issue with Hawthorne is his inconsistent motor. He needs to learn to play hard all the time to maximize his abilities.
6-11 C Marcus Hopkins of Pope John Regional (NJ) 2019 (Team Lillard)
Hopkins is a physically impressive five man. He has long arms, some strength and is fairly athletic. He has a nice jump hook and a solid drop step. Hopkins is a decent defender and a fairly good rebounder. He traveled from New Jersey this summer to play with Oakland based Team Lillard.
6-2 CG Chance McMillan of St Patrick-St Vincent 2019 (Lakeshow 17 Elite)
McMillan is an athlete combo guard combo guard who is emerging as a bright prospect. He is a confident ball handler who can create for himself and he has an effective pull up game. His best asset is his ability to shoot the ball (with 3 range). McMillan is also a solid driver with a nice hesitation move.
6-7 PF Aaron Murphy of Modesto Christian 2019 (Lakeshow 17 Elite)
Murphy is an elite athlete with an exceptional motor who is very aggressive. He runs very well and never stops running. He is a competent ball handler with a nice first step who can break down defenders one on one. Murphy finishes real well in transition. He is also a very good passer. He is a very good rebounder who pursues the ball consistently. Murphy also hedges very well (quickly) or ball screens. Simply put, this is a guy you want on your team.
Best of the Rest
6-8 C/PF Jay Allen-Tovar of Valley Christian HS 2019 (Team Lillard)
Allen-Tovar is a big-bodied combo post man who can score on the block. He knows how to dribble operate, has a nice turnaround shot and a solid up and under move. He is a decent ball handler and he can pass it. Tovar is a solid rebounder in his box and he can block a shot. His biggest issue is his effort is inconsistent. He needs to learn to play hard all the time.
6-1 PG Miles Amos of University 2019 (Bay City Select 2019)
Amos is a strong and athletic one man with solid skills. He’s a confident ball handler who attacks in transition consistently. He is a very good driver who goes hard to the hoops and finishes with authority. He is tough-minded and is a capable defender. Amos must prove himself as an outside shooter and this will determine what level he ends up at ultimately.
6-0 PG Drayton Caolie of West Linn (OR) 2019 (Hoop Salem 17U)
Caolie is a highly competitive one man who makes a lot of things happen. He is a real good ball handler and passer who pushes the break consistently. He sees the floor well and makes pretty good decisions. Caolie can shoot it well with 3-point range and has a nice floater in the lane.
6-1 CG Kyree Davis of Oakwood 2019 (Lakeshow 17 Select)
Davis is a transfer from Tennessee who is new to the Nor Cal scene and made a very favorable impression in this event. He’s an athletic combo guard who makes a lot of plays with the ball in his hands, both in transition and in the half court. He is an effective penetrator/driver with a real nice first step. Davis does need to prove himself as a perimeter shooter.
6-0 PG Akil Edwards of St. Patrick- St Vincent 2019 (Team Lillard)
Edwards is a real athletic one man with nice burst. He pushes the break aggressively and makes things happen in transition. He has a pull-up game in the half court and shoots it fairly well with 3- range. He’s an effective penetrator/driver with a nice first step. Edwards is also a solid defender with quick hands. He is also a high-level football prospect.
6-9 C/PF Jhaylon Martinez of Vanden HS 2020 (Team Arsenal 17 Elite)
Martinez is a combo postman with a versatile offensive game. He is a solid post up player who can dribble operate and has various go-to moves. He also has an ok one-bounce drive. Martinez shoots it fairly well mid-range and ok from 3-point land. He’s an adequate rebounder in his box. Freitas had him in this category and we wanted to move him since we agree with Pangos analyst Dinos Trigonis that he is rapidly improving, but he’s not quite at that level yet.
6-7 PF Dee Juan Pruitt of Grant 2019 (Team Lillard)
Pruitt is a long and athletic four man who is active. He has a decent one-bounce drive and he can finish around the basket. His skills do need a little polish. Pruitt is a solid rebounder who is active on the glass.
6-5 CG Wrenn Robinson of St. Ignatius 2019 (Team Lillard)
Roberson is an athletic combo guard who is starting to make a name for himself. His ball handling skills are solid and he shoots it well with deep range. He moves fairly well without the ball and has a solid pull up game. Robinson is also a solid driver with a nice first step.
6-7 GF Brian Warinner of Bend (OR) 2019 (Hoop Salem 17U)
Warinner is a combo forward with real long arms who is a decent athlete with some lift. He’s an ok ball handler who passes it fairly well. He is an ok-one bounce driver who also has a solid drop step move on the block. Warinner is also a pretty consistent rebounder.
Other Solid Prospects to Consider
6-2 SG David Ahazie of Campolindo 2019 (Team Superstar 17 Elite)
Real athletic, can handle and pass, effective in transition-can pull up and can finish, solid driver with a good first step, capable rebounder.
6-6 PF Alex Allen of Head Royce HS 2019 (Lakeshow 17 Black)
Ok/fairly good athlete, strong, long arms, has a decent floater and an ok turnaround shot, can rebound. When we saw him play he was aggressive and used his size well.
6-5 G/W Jordon Bryant of Del Campo 2019 (YBA 17 Cole)
Athletic, ok ball handler, ok shooter with 3 range-low release, has a pull up floater, capable rebounder
6-5 SG Mason Friesch of Cardinal Newman 2019 (Team Arsenal 17 Select)
Decent athlete, runs well, solid playmaker in transition, has a middle game in the half court, moves ok without the ball, shoots it fairly well with 3 range, can defend some, has a nice motor and a lot of hop in his game. He has a chance to be the top player in the Redwood Empire.
6-5 C/F Zach Johnson of Lick-Wilmerding 2019 (Bay City Select 2019)
Solid all-around combo forward whose stock continues to rise. Solid postup player-dribble operates well on the block, good passer-sees the floor, capable rebounder, high IQ.
5-11 SG Ben Knight of Mission 2019 (San Francisco Rebels 17)
Real nice burst, confident handler, shows an ok middle game, can shoot (3 range) and drive.
6-4 CG Marcus McCutchen of El Capitan 2019 (Stanco Stampede 17U)
Fairly athletic, long arms, good ball handling skills, nice all-around scorer, can defend and rebound some.
6-0 PG Iniko McNeil of Bishop O’Dowd 2019 (Team Arsenal 17 Elite)
Athletic, confident ball handler, sees the floor, shoots it fairly well with 3 range, can run a team, does compete.
6-6 PF Jonathan Nchekwube of Churchill (OR) 2019 (Hoop Salem 17U)
Athletic, long arms, is aggressive, can handle it, has an ok jump hook, big-time rebounder who is active on the glass and pursues the ball, can block a shot.
5-8 PG Oscar Pedraza of St. Francis 2019 (Peak 2019)
Decent athlete, real competitive, fundamentally sound, good ball handler and passer, has a nice pull up game, shoots it fairly well (3 range), works hard on defense.
6-2 CG Zyon Pullin of College Park 2019 (Team Arsenal 17 Elite)
Athletic, long arms, pushes it in transition and finishes well, has a nice pull up game, can shoot it ok (3 range), consistent driver.
6-5 SG Hunter Santsche of Arcata 2019 (Lakeshow 17 Black)
Fair athlete, can run, has some lift, has a middle game, moves well without the ball, good shooter with 3-point range.
6-5 PF/C Jaden Sheppard of Amador Valley 2019 (Lakeshow 17 Elite)
Fairly athletic, can run, has a pull up floater and a nice jump hook, solid rebounder.
6-1 CG David Sonnier of Riordan 2019 (San Francisco Rebels 17)
Athletic, runs very well, capable ball handling skills, effective in up tempo, gets to the basket on the drive consistently, shoots it ok with 3 range.
5-10 PG Brett Thompson of James Logan HS 2019 (Team Arsenal 17 Elite)
High energy, runs well and never stops running, pushes the break consistently, finishes well in transition, shoots it fairly well with 3- range. When we observed him he hit five three-pointers and finished with 21 points and was unstoppable. He was ineligible last season and is just starting to hit the radar screen of colleges
6-4 SF Chika Amamgbo of The Athenian School 2019 (Lakeshow 17 Elite)
Good athlete, runs real well, long arms, handles it ok, can pass, effective driver with a nice first step, has a solid floater, active on the glass.
6-2 CG Gabe Bansuelo of Bishop Manogue 2019 (YBA 17 Cole)
Fairly athletic, runs well, solid ball handling and passing skills, makes plays in transition, shoots it fairly well with 3 range, has a floater drive.
5-11 G/W Will Beasley of Menlo- Atherton 2019 (Bay Area Sonics 17U)
Average/fair athlete, confident ball handler, shoots it well with 3-point range, high IQ.
5-10 PG Mason Betterton of Reno (NV) 2019 (Reno Elite)
Average/fair athlete, handles it well, can pass, ok playmaker in transition, has a pull up game, goes hard, does attack.
6-8 F/C Kris Bortz of Monte Vista 2019 (Lakeshow 17 Black)
Average athlete, body is looking much better, passes it well, moves ok without the ball, has a decent post up game with a solid jump hook. When we saw him he exhibited a soft touch around the basket.
6-1 PG Caden Dixon of Tualatin (OR) 2019 (Hoop Salem High Academic)
Fair athlete, can run, fairly good strength, handles and passes it well, capable playmaker in transition, has a floater.
6-4 PG Richard “Max” Fried of University HS 2019 (Bay Area Warriors Gold)
Decent athlete, runs the floor well, solid ball handler, finishes well, rebounds well from the guard position.
6-1 CG Arlek Greenhalgh of Timpview HS (UT) 2019 (Salt Lake Metro Black)
Average athlete, solid ball handling skills, finds the open man well, pulls up well- both in transition and half court, ok driver, shoots the deep 3, has a floater, can rebound.
6-4 PF Chris Gray of Burbank 2019 (Team Arsenal 17 High Academic)
Fairly athletic, can run, has a jump hook, capable rebounder.
6-0 PG Thomas Gregorios of De La Salle 2019 (Team Superstar 17 Elite)
Ok athlete, high energy, handles and passes it well, capable playmaker in transition, shoots it fairly well with 3 range, can run a team.
6-2 PF Ian Klock of Western Christian 2019 (IE Magic)
Fair athlete, finds ways to score, solid rebounder, can block shot, does compete.
6-6 CF Timothy Lont of Skyline (UT) 2019 (Salt Lake Metro Black)
Fair athlete, runs well, long arms, effective facing up, moves fairly well without the ball, decent driver, can rebound.
6-4 SG Oisin Mc Cormack of Sacred Heart Cathedral 2019 (Bay City Select 2019)
Ok athlete, ok ball handler, passes fairly well, shoots it ok with 3 range, solid rebounder.
6-2 SG/SF Connor Murphy of San Ramon Valley 2019 (Bay City Select 2019)
Average athlete, runs the floor fairly well, capable ball handler, solid pull up game in the half court, good shooter with 3 range.
6-9 C Vincent Olm of Ripon 2019 (Team Arsenal 17 Elite)
Average athlete, big body, has a mini jump hook, a decent drop step, ok turnaround shot, making slow progress.
5-11 PG Derek Smith of Delta (UT) 2020 (Salt Lake Metro Black)
Average/fair athlete, handles it well, pull up in transition and half court, ok/fairly good shooter with 3 range, has a floater drive.
6-5 CF Trevon Snoddy of Skyridge (UT) 2020 (Salt Lake Metro Black)
Average athlete, runs fairly well, can post up (hard to guard inside), can face up drive some, active rebounder.
5-10 PG Trey Stevens of Reed (NV) 2020 (Reno Elite)
Average/fair athlete, runs fairly well, handles it well, does see the floor, pulls up well half court, ok shooter, can run a team, does compete.
6-3 SG Parker Spence of McMinville (OR) 2019 (Hoop Salem High Academic)
Average/fair athlete, can handle it, good passer, has a pull up game in the half court, shoots it fairly well with 3 range.
6-2 SF Izayah Talmadge of Sacramento 2019 (YBA 17 Cole)
Good athlete, solid ball handler, moves fairly well without the ball, shoots it ok, decent driver, can rebound.
6-2 PG RJ Veliz of Blanchet Catholic (WA) 2019 (Hoop Salem 17U)
Fairly athletic, solid ball handler, has a pull up game half court, fairly good shooter with 3 range, goes very hard to the hoop on the drive.
6-1 PG Richard Washington of Bentley 2019 (Team Arsenal 17 High Academic)
Good athlete, has ball handling and skills, capable transition playmaker, has a nice hesitation drive, can rebound.
5-10 PG Ousmani Williams of Oakland 2019 (Lakeshow 17 Select)
Athletic and energetic, confident ball handler, can make plays in transition, ok shooter with 3-point range.
6-2 CG Jeryn Williams of Clayton Valley 2019 (Team Superstar 17 Elite)
Ok athlete, long arms capable ball handler, pulls up in transition and half court, ok driver.
6-3 F Ian Brand of Modesto Christian 2019 (Stanco Stampede 17 U)
5-8 PG Alex Byrd of Stuart Hall 2019 (Bay City Select 2019)
5-11 SG Lee Grass of Spanish Springs (NV) 2019 (Reno Elite)
6-6 PG Lawrence Long of San Leandro 2019 (Team Arsenal 17 Elite)
6-2 CG Trevon O’ Neal of Freedom 2019 (Lakeshow 17 Elite)
6-2 SF Naloan Neopomuceno of St. Francis HS 2020 (Peak 2019)
6-8 C Brennen Newsome of Sheldon 2019 (Lakeshow 17 Black)
6-3 G Kyle Mc Graw of Nueva School 2019 (Peak 2019)
6-5 SG Charley Moore of University 2019 (Bay Area Warriors Gold)
6-1 CG Brenden Patrick of Bishop O’Dowd 2019 (Bay City Select 2019)
6-5 CF Simeon Richardson of Pittsburg 2019 (Team Arsenal 17 Elite)
6-4 SG Marlon Short of Monte Vista 2019 (Bay Area Warriors Gold)
5-9 PG David Stevenson of Bountiful (UT) 2019 (Salt Lake Metro Gold)
5-11 G/W Zander Whyte of Western Christian 2019 (IE Magic)
6-0 G Marvin Zou of Palo Alto 2019 (Peak 2019)