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April 9, 2011HAMPTON, Va.- Friday night, the Boo Williams Invitational - which also doubles as the first leg of Nike's Elite Youth Basketball League - kicked off in style at the Boo Williams Sportsplex. 2012 shooting guard Ricardo Ledo showed up as a pleasant addition to the Albany City Rocks roster and lit up the scoreboard. The five-star wasn't the only one putting in work.
Friday night standouts at Boo
Ricardo Ledo, SG, Albany City Rocks- Already ranked as the number two shooting guard in the class of 2012, Ledo could be staking a claim as the top wing scorer in his class before it's all said and done. A one on one creator off of the dribble, Ledo is proficient in creating his own offense and is deadly at the rim, from 15 feet and has range that extends beyond the three point line. Offensively, he did pretty much whatever he wanted, whenever he needed to, during an impressive 29 point outing during his first run with his new squad.
Rodney Purvis, PG/SG, CP3- The debate this Spring is going to center around whether or not the powerful and athletic Louisville commitment is more of a point guard or two. He's an athletic driver with supreme body control but seems to have his head down while running the offense. Away from the ball, he looks more comfortable when he can catch and make decisions within a dribble two. Either way, Rick Pitino will find a way to put the five-star talent on the floor. He was good for 32 points and seven rebounds in a loss.
Steve Taylor, PF/SF, Mac Irvin Fire- Previoulsy considered more of a power forward, the 6-foot-7 junior from Chicago (Ill.) Simeon is showing a much improved perimeter game. Looking very comfortable with his jumper, the slender forward was draining threes from all-around the arc during a 23 point and seven rebound outing. Currently sitting just outside the top 100 at #102 in 2012, he's looking like he's on the move up and may be the best prospect the state of Illinois has to offer from that class.
Arnaud Adala Moto, SF, Team Takeover- Few players were as impressive on Friday night as the powerfully built 6-foot-6 wing. Most comfortable using his strength to get into the lane or bowl over opponents in transition, Adalo Moto showed surprisingly soft touch out to the three point line. He rebounds, plays defense and rattled off a list of Virginia Tech, Georgetown, Wake Forest, UNLV, Maryland, Xavier and George Mason.
Lorenzo Cugini, SF, King James- Although he's probably not quite his listed 6-foot-7, the junior wing is a big time shooter with deep range. In catch and shoot situations on the perimeter, you can pretty much count it once he locks in on the rim and lets it fly. Not a bad athlete either, he's one to watch as the Spring drags on.
Willie Cauley, C, MoKan Elite- Each time the 6-foot-10 Cauley takes the floor you can see his game developing. Cut out of the mold of a Tyson Chandler type big man, he's a lengthy center who runs the floor, blocks shots and causes troubles with his length. While his offense isn't quite as developed as his defense and rebounding, he's coming around on that end of the floor and is an outstanding passer for a kid his size. He was good for 12 points, 11 rebounds and five assists to go along with three blocks and many more altered shots.
Kethan Savage, SG, Team Takeover- A strong 6-foot-2 off guard who is comfortable attacking the rim, Savage made a living by getting into the paint and drawing fouls. He did mix in a couple of jump shots, but the bulk of his 21 points came from the free-throw line where he was 13-13. For good measure he added seven rebounds and three assists.
Anthony Bennett, PF, CIA Bounce- A strong, 6-foot-7 four man who has some face-up skills, Bennett spent some time patrolling the perimeter and hoisting up three-point jumpers. However, in transition and around the rim was where he did the vast majority of his damage during a 23 point and seven rebound effort. Perhaps a tad short as a four, he makes up for it with his length, activity and physicality. A four-star prospect who ranks #91 in the class of 2012, he's positioning himself for a move up the rankings.
Wayne Selden, SG/SF, BABC- The way the powerful, near 6-foot-5 freshman dominated the Fairfax Stars in a 15 and under game was borderline comical. Drive to the rim, monstrous dunks in transition, deep threes it didn't really matter because he did what he wanted when he wanted to. He was playing a man's game and there wasn't a thing anybody could do to stop him while dropping an effortless 32.
More notes and notables from Friday night
Playing alongside Wayne Selden on BABC's 15 and under team, Johnnie Vassar is an entertaining six-foot tall point guard. The Groton (Mass.) Lawrence Academy product has massive hops, is quick to the lane and the lefty is clever once he gets around the basket. Even though he's only a member of the class of 2014, Theo Pinson has already gotten plenty of pub, and deservedly so. The skinny 6-foot-5 wing is an electric athlete, passes the ball extremely well and despite a somewhat unorthodox shot, he has to be respected out to the three point line. Gets to the rim, slashes for dunks and oozes with elite potential. Semi Ojeleye is a well built wing from the class of 2013 who had a nice opening night for MoKan Elite. The well built 6-foot-5 wing was aggressive to the rim, knocked down some open looks and appears to be tracking as a high major prospect. A teammate of Ojeleye and Willie Cauley on MoKan Elite, 2013 shooting guard Austin Ruder is a dangerous catch and shoot guy. At one point during MoKan's win over King James, the 6-foot-2 Ruder knocked down four straight threes during a four minute span while racking up 18 points.
Last Fall, Zach Auguste looked like an intriguing big man despite being limited by foul trouble. Playing in Hampton with the Albany City Rocks, the 6-foot-8 power forward was efficient on Friday night. He ran the floor, cleaned up around the rim and showed some ability facing the rim while scoring 13 points. Small forward or power forward? That's the long term question with Jarmal Reid. What's not under dispute is the 6-foot-6 athlete's production and willingness to play with physicality and toughness. Though he had some finishes crawl off the rim, he was still able to put together an impressive double double of 17 points and 10 rebounds. He's not the biggest guy around. Actually, he's not even close. But, 5-foot-6 point guard Derrick Randolph of the Mac Irvin Fire really makes things happen. He only scored eight points, but he also contributed seven assists, had five steals and generally wreaked havoc during the Fire's win over Nike Team Florida. Skinny and lacking in strength, freshman Justin Jackson of the Houston Hoops is at a little bit of a disadvantage physically on the 17 and under level. However, the 6-foot-4 wing lacks little for skill and feel for the game. It's still very early, but he's already establishing himself as one of the top players in his class.