I was in Lisle to see a few 15U teams play in the Team Rose tournament. Here are some of the standouts from the games that I saw.
Josiah Calvin (5’9 PG, St. Viator)
A skilled shot creator, Calvin got to the rim for floaters and knocked down a big three for Team GPA. He has a good change of pace and handles the ball well in tight spaces to get to his spots. Calvin showed the ability to apply ball pressure at times during the game and has the quickness and anticipation to make an impact on that end going forward. The St. Viator freshman has a bright future as a combo guard.
Joey Hernandez (5’8 PG, St. Viator)
Hernandez plays with a pitbull mentality, giving constant effort on the defensive end and playing much bigger than his listed size. Opposing ball-handlers were struggling to get into offense when he was the primary defender and he had multiple steals and a block off the backboard in transition. Offensively, he has good arc on his jump shot and brings the physicality to finish plays through contact. More of a playmaking guard, Hernandez collapsed the defense and set up teammates regularly.
Dayvion Ellis (5’8 PG/SG, St. Viator)
The tenacious defense and strength at his age stood out for Ellis. He was disruptive in their full court press as a ball hawk that was capable of speeding guys up. Ellis had a couple of nice takes to the rim, including an and-one, and should see plenty of free throw opportunities as he matures with how well he draws contact. He’s another St. Viator guard that should be tracked over the next few years.
Ben Schneider (5’8 PG, Prospect)
Schneider is quick with the body control to stop on a dime to either change direction or pull-up for a jumper. During the game, he made two threes from the wing and got into the soft spot of the zone for an elbow pull-up. He plays low to the ground at 5-foot-8 and showed athleticism with the ball in his hands. His shooting range should allow him to open up driving lanes and use that first step and creativity to score in the paint as well..
Reid Olson (5’9 PG, Niles North)
Olson was efficient with his touches and excelled as a catch-and-shoot threat. He hit a trio of threes that barely touched the rim and stayed in motion off of the ball well. Nothing was forced, looking to move the ball within the offense while showing the ability to throw on point passes with either hand. The standout Niles North freshman also jumped a passing lane and scored through contact in transition. Olson is among the most productive and heady point guards in the freshman class.
Panayiotis Sotos (6’0 PG, Maine South )
Only an 8th grader, Sotos was very impressive with his pace and feel for the game. He’s a very fluid ball-handler that used his length to get into the paint before delivering nice passes for easy shots and making a same-foot floater. As he gets stronger, he should really be a problem attacking off ball screens and in transition. Sotos connected on a three as well and looked right at home running the point for Fund U’s top team.
Theo Rocca (6’2 SG, Evanston)
For a freshman, Rocca has good size and length for a guard. From the tip, he came out aggressive knocking down a corner three and turning a couple of steals into finishes. He made solid reads defensively to get deflections while still staying in front of the ball. Rocca created angles to the rim and had some on-time drive-and-kick passes as well as some throw aheads that led to layups. He has a projectable body and good skill at this point.
Ayden Farrare (6’3 SG/SF, Hinsdale South)
Farrare is a big wing that was making athletic layups off of run outs and early attacks in the offense. He also had a tough stepback three from the corner after he got going to extend their lead. I was impressed with his defensive activity while guarding multiple positions. The physicality that he has should give him an advantage against older competition during the high school season.
DeZhon Hall (6’2 PG/SG, N/A )
The gifted 8th grader out of Indy was having his way all game using his explosiveness and power to get downhill and score in volume. Hall had multiple and-ones in traffic and was knifing to the rim for different types of layups regularly. His leaping ability is uncommon for a player his age. Hall was playing at another altitude than the defenders and it showed. He’s going to be a problem in high school.
Brady Sehlhorst (6’5 SG, Notre Dame College Prep)
Sehlhorst had a couple of big dunks in the latter part of the game but he made his presence felt as a shot blocker, rebounder, and scorer throughout the game. His length and size allowed him to play multiple positions, often guarding on the interior where he walled up and blocked numerous shots. The 6-foot-5 guard hit a three and finished a layup off of two feet after jump stopping to gain his balance on a drive. The versatility, shooting, and length will make Sehlhorst a well-known player in the class.