Special report today again from James Blackburn, who attended the Battle of the Blue Ridge in Lenoir, NC, which pits Oak Hill against Patterson School in a scrimmage...with many college coaches in attendance, such as Virginia Tech's Seth Greenberg.
The game was the fourth-annual “Battle of the Blue Ridge” scrimmage. The teams played two 20-minute halves with regular rules and stopped clock. The third 20-minute half was played with a running clock. The first half was won by Patterson, 53-38, but Oak Hill bounced back and won the second game, 50-46, with a winning three-pointer by Bryon Allen of Oak Hill. The coaches played mostly the backups in the last half. Patterson rebounded the ball really well, particularly on the offensive end.
Players to Watch
• Doron Lamb (Jr., 6’4”, 185 lbs.): Lamb is a solid player who does what is asked of him and does it well. He started off the game cold from the floor, but is a great shooter nonetheless, finding his rhythm in the second half. He has been offered by a number of schools including Wake Forest, Memphis, Syracuse, St. John's, and Pittsburgh. Duke is looking at him, as well, but has not offered yet.
• Keith “Tiny” Gallon (Sr., 6’9”, 320 lbs.): Tiny is a beast, to put it mildly. He controls the paint by rebounding on both ends of the floor and contesting shots. He has a limited offensive game, but rattles the rim on every dunk and uses his size and strength well. A good passer and dribbler for a big man, Tiny also has a decent shot with a 15-foot shooting range.
What I question most about Tiny is his attitude. He is very vocal, which gets him into trouble sometimes. On a couple of plays, he didn’t get a foul called and quit on the play. His conditioning is also a question mark. He plays well when rested, but tires after about five minutes of up-and-down action.
Despite these question marks, Tiny looks like a very intriguing prospect with limitless potential. Oklahoma, Miss. St., and Cal have expressed interest. Author's note: Alex Schwartz recently found out that Oklahoma is the leader for Gallon.
• Lamont Jones (Sr., 6'0", 180 lbs.): Jones was the best player on the floor for either team tonight. He is an explosive scorer, getting to the rim at will and possessing the ability to finish over taller players. Extremely quick with the ability to handle the ball with pressure on him, Jones also sees the floor well and had a nice behind-the-back pass for a layup in the second half. Jones is a great shooter with good arc and elevation. Virginia Tech, UNCC, and Cincinnati are interested in this point guard from New York.
• Vincent Council (Gr., 6’1”, 160 lbs.): Vincent is very smart player and has great court sense and passing ability. He is also a lockdown defender. Even though he did hit a three-pointer, he needs to improve his shot and extend his range, showing hesitancy in shooting. He is being looked at by Appalachian State and UNC-Greensboro.
• Clarence Trent (Gr., 6’8”, 225 lbs.): Clarence is a deadly shooter that creates matchup problems with his size. He plays hard at all times and has a good attitude. He has committed to Washington.
• Hassan Whiteside (Sr., 6’11”, 187 lbs.): Hassan is very long and extremely athletic. He is a good rebounder, but has trouble finishing because of his size. He needs to get stronger and gain weight. He is a raw player and needs to improve in many areas, including his jump shot. Charlotte and Marshall are interested.
• Hunter McClintock (Gr., 6’1”, 175 lbs.): Hunter is a player who could make a lot of noise down the road. He was the fastest player on the floor with the ball and can handle the ball well. A good passer who plays good defense, McClintock is also a great athlete, throwing the ball off the backboard and windmilling it in warmups. His size might scare some people away, but he plays hard. A number of schools are looking at the point guard, including Wake Forest, Boston College, and Appalachian State.
• David Nyarsuk (Jr., 7’1”, 220 lbs.): Nyarsuk is very long and athletic like his counterpart, Whiteside. He is a good rebounder and tries to dunk everything, playing above the rim. He plays hard, but looks a little clumsy at times. Still, he's only a junior and has a couple years to improve. Wake Forest, Tenn., and Ohio State have noticed the center.