It's July and the AAU teams are once again hitting the road. The difference this month is that division one college coaches will now join the rest of the college coaching world in gyms around the nation. This week's page of Minnesota Preps basketball notes focus centrally on several of the local AAU teams and what is new with them.
Howard Pulley kicked off their tournament with a loss to the Chicago Meanstreets but they rebounded to defeat the Illinois Heat 68-60. Jacob Thomas and Peter Crawford each totaled 20 points in the victory to lead the squad. The eight point victory occurred after the Pulley team was down most of the game.
The Pulley 15s top team defeated the Illinois Rising Stars 65-49 and Isaiah Zierden knocked down six three-pointers on his way to a team high 21 points. Zierden was a freshman for Benilde-St. Margaret's last year and is quickly grabbing headlines playing with the Panthers. His father is Don Zierden a new assistant coach of the Washington Wizards. While Zierden will be in Washington this year it sounds like his family will remain in Minnesota and Isaiah will remain at Benilde-St. Margaret's.
The Minnesota Comets are off to a good start at this event themselves. Their top 16 and Under team kicked off the event with a 24 point win over ECI Minnesota. The Minnesota Comets 17s second team (the Seevers group) won 81-71 over ECI East as Scott Nystrom from Kimball Area outscored the talented Nik Savageau of ECI East 21 to 20. Six-foot-7 Aaron Pavek of Brainerd also had a strong performance. The top Minnesota Comets 17s team pulled off a big victory by leading the Playground Elite team the entire game and defeating that group who has players like Cimeon Bowers and Chim Kadima.
FURY PLAYERS GETTING D2 INTEREST
In addition to Yuriy Malashenko of Jordan who was featured on Minnesota Preps yesterday there are several other Fury players getting division two interest including Dajon Newell of Lakeville North, Justin Casey of Park Center, and Danny Geiger of New Prague. Several teams are hard after Dajon including Southwest State who has seen him play several times. Casey and Geiger don't quite get the headlines that Yuriy and Dajon receive but both are moving up the radar of college coaches.
"Justin and Danny have also received some D2 interest," said Fury coach Ben Davis. "Danny has had ankle problems all summer as has sprained both ankles a few times. We have decided to give him three weeks off and he will play in the Pump N Run tournament July 13-15 and The Main Event in Vegas. I feel bad for the kid as he hasn't been able to play much this summer but he has never had any ankle problems in the past."
And let's also not forget Jack Wittenborg from Bloomington Jefferson whose shooting ability has firmly put him on the college radar this off-season.
The Fury is currently 2-0 at the Hoosier Shootout. They play against another 2-0 team this afternoon for the first place spot in the championship bracket.
-Playing in the Hoosier Shootout the Minnesota Magic Black is 1-1 thus far. They have a game this afternoon that they must win if they are to play in the title bracket.
-The 43 Hoops Basketball Club 17 and Under team is 1-1 thus far while the 16 and Under squad coached by Chris Carr has won both their games. They are in Cincinnati at the It Takes 5 Classic.
-The Minnesota Pump N Run resumes summer play this weekend in Chicago. The 17s will be doing so without coach Jerry Robertson who recently resigned. Also, power forward Mike Rostampour is fighting mono so he will not be playing for a while.
-At the Colorado State camp Kevin Noreen added another offer as the Rams came through with a scholarship. Word is that Kevin may play some on the road with the Minnesota Magic Black when he's not with the Pump N Run. The Magic Black also added Jalen Jaspers and Doug Sewell since the spring turned summer although there moves have been permanent.
-Southwest State has not offered Tim Lubke but they have shown interest in Tim and he has checked out their campus. State has offered some scholarship money to Jalen Jaspers and Alex Hanks, they are looking at several point guards including Dajon Newell, and overall they have five players to replace so they are looking hard at Minnesota and Iowa for players at several positions.