It was a great play when ECI Prospects guard Joe Hanstad whipped a no-look pass to a teammate for a score. It was an eye opening finish when Roosevelt Scott threw a pass off the board to himself and smashed emphatically with two hands. It was one of the most sensational plays of all time when Ross Travis took off from just inside the free throw line, cocked the ball, and dunked over a Wrath player.
The Travis dunk will be talked about forever. The look on the face of teammate Marquel Curtis said it all as he just turned around with eyes wide and mouth open. People throughout the gym had similar looks as the overly athletic Travis had just done the amazing. From just outside the wing the ball was rotated to Ross who had a nice running start before taking off just inside the free throw line elbow. Soaring through the air Ross cocked the ball in his hand and when he met a Wrath player at about where the NBA charge semi-circle would be. From there Travis smashed the ball through the rim with big time force while also making contact with an opponent. It was an example of that explosive athleticism that so many high majors around the country are following.
If you wanted more dunks the best game for you would have been the Minnesota Pump-N-Run against Minnesota Premiere. Roosevelt Scott opened the game with two dunks and then a three scoring the first seven points. Jonah Travis had two or three explosive jams, Kyle Noreen had two dunks including one over a Premiere opponent, and Jordan Jackson (Henry Sibley) dunked in the open floor in MJ leaning fashion while the retreating Premiere players just looked and laughed. It was a dunk fest finished by the Roosevelt Scott two hand smash after a pass to himself.
The Pumps played a tough second round opponent in the Minnesota Fury Gold who has kids like Joe Zangel (St. Louis Park), Lamonte Hall (DeLaSalle), Aaron Ziman (St. Louis Park), and Marcus Dorsey (DeLaSalle) who are all hard working defenders plus they are coached by Nick Carroll from Hamline who has been noted for his defense in the MIAC. Because of their physical play the game was hotly contested for some time before the Fury Blue just couldn't keep up on the offensive end.
Jonah Travis (DeLaSalle) may have been the toughest for the Fury Blue to stop yesterday. All day he was catching the ball and attacking the rim from every angle possible and if he wasn't finishing over the top of defenders he was fouled and scoring at the foul line. Jonah scored field goals with both his left and right hand plus in the first game he showed that his jumper is solid as well making two 17-footers putting out a smooth stroke.
Also impressive for the Pumps was Joel Lindberg (Superior) who plays point guard with such efficiency. There are no wasted motions from Lindberg who handles and passes with extreme care plus blowing off ball pressure like it was annoying spring insects. Turnovers from Lindberg are rare as his skill level and court IQ are at a very high level. Kyle Noreen (Minnesota Transitions) does a lot of the same things Lindberg does playing with a high IQ on both ends of the floor. Noreen seemed to do a little of everything making the smart plays that make a coach comfortable to keep him on the court in high-pressure situations.
Roosevelt Scott (St. Paul Johnson) is a much different player than he was a year ago. He definitely is a division one athlete with length that seems to go on forever and he's learned to use that length well. Defensively Scott was active all day getting numerous deflections and steals and going the other way to finish in high tempo fashion. He's making a decent amount of his treys and Roosevelt has also developed more physically looking like a much stronger kid. Great pick-up for the Minnesota Pump N Run.
Joe Hanstad (Dickinson, North Dakota) also put on a show of skill yesterday. Impressive both passing the basketball and shooting it Hanstad looked every bit like the skilled offensive product that has so many division one schools interested in his ability. Jumpers were hit from all areas on the floor when contested or not. And when Joe wasn't hitting himself he was looking for big man Matt Borowicz (Stephen-Argyle) who did finish mid-range jumpers or tough post-ups with his soft left-handed touch.
Freddie Young (Brooklyn Park) of 43 Hoops had a nice Saturday night. Young's quickness allows him to be a pesky ball pressure guard and that's no secret. What was more impressive was his offensive production. In the halfcourt set Freddie had a series of four buckets in the second half scoring both inside and out. Against the Minnesota Wrath Freddie caught a ball rotation and attacked the bucket to score in traffic plus he hit a pair of triples that showcased fundamental shooting form. Young's offensive game looks to have grown and that will definitely help his prospect status.
Finally, Levi Abercrombie (Robbinsdale Armstrong) had probably the most unexpected scoring performance when he put up big numbers for Minnesota Select II against the ECI Prospects. Levi hit contested threes and attacked interior defenses without hesitation on a regular basis.