On the Radar Hoops, Inc
On the Radar Hoops, Inc.

#OTRHoopsReport: Sweet 16 Session II Friday night spin

There were plenty of players that stood out on Day one of the second session of the Sweet 16.

Powder Springs, GA -The second installment of On the Radar’s Sweet 16 Tournament Series started with a couple of big time matchups in its showcase games at McEachern High School, and a full coach’s row section was on hand to evaluate the field.

By: @Hypesouth_

A.O.T. rolls

A.O.T. jumped out to quick 10-2 lead and never looked back. The McEachern (GA) High School trio of Babatunde Akingbola, Isaac Okoro, and Sharife Cooper overwhelmed an inferior 2019 Xpress United squad.

Sharife Cooper

At 5-foot-9, Cooper ran the show for A.O.T. to perfection. He set the tone early on the defensive end with two quick steals that led to easy buckets out in transition for himself as well as teammates. Despite his lack of size and youthfulness, he more than makes up for it with his high basketball-IQ and confidence. The clever floor general possesses a cool, calm, and collected demeanor that is virtually unheard of at his age. Cooper stuffed the box score with 27 points, seven assists, and four steals. A versatile forward at 6-foot-5, Isaac Okoro has a complete game. He has the capacity to mix it down low with the big boys as well as step out and consistently knock down the jump shot. The multi-talented sophomore chipped in 18 points and nine rebounds, helping make quick work of their opposition. Right now, Okoro is the most polished of the bunch. Akingbola was an absolute enforcer on the offensive and defensive interiors. The rangy big-man swatted shots at a high rate and grabbed just about every rebound that came off the glass. Though he scored 2-points, Akingbola collected fourteen rebounds and five blocks.

Team NLP (TN) survives

Ikcaven Curry

Team NLP (TN) outlasts a scrappy Q6 All-Stars (FL) squad, 50-49, after Ikcaven Curry came up with a loose ball under the rim as time expired. Speaking of Curry, the 6-foot-5 wing is the total package that can affect the game in a variety of ways. He was a matchup problem all game for the Q6 All-Stars. He blew by defenders with his decisive first step as well as applied defensive pressure all night. The high-energy junior finished with 11 points, five rebounds, and three steals. Curry’s motor sets him apart and will definitely have coaches coming back to check up on him the rest of the weekend. Dionte Ware provided the spark off the bench. The 6-foot-4 sophomore is a sniper from beyond the arc. If given any air space, he has the kind of trigger that will blow a game wide open. He connected on three deep 3-pointers that all came in crucial moments of the game. Jason Jitoboh, 6-foot-10, took up a lot of space on the inside. The young big man made an impact with 6 points, seven rebounds, and 3 blocks on the night. Though his offensive game needs polishing, he can still be a valuable asset for high majors because of his size and presence in the paint.

Q6’s Nick Heard (Deland, FL) scored a game-high 18 points while filling it up from downtown. He made good on four trifectas in the second half to keep the All-Stars within striking distance. Jasen West (Winter Springs, FL) showed a lot of poise and maturity from the lead guard position. The 6-foot-1 junior chipped in 11 points and six assists. Though they lost in a heartbreaker, Q6 is a team that has the ability to bounce back and win it all.

AC Georgia pulls away

Kalu Ezipke

Discovery High’s Kalu Ezipke continues his ascension. In the nightcap headliner, coaches filled coach’s row to get a glimpse of the multi-talent forward. At 6-foot-7, Ezipke continues to display his ability to play on the low block as well as away from the basket. In addition, he can effectively guard smaller-quicker opponents out on the perimeter. He finished the game with 11 points and eight rebounds. With offers already in hand from numerous mid-major programs, a couple of high-majors have started to sniff around at the phenom out of Lawrenceville, Georgia. KJ Jenkins is another young prospect from the state of Georgia on the rise. He scored 10 points and 5 assists in the 67-60 victory over SEBA. The 6-foot, 150-pound point guard is an interesting prospect that has played his name into discussion this offseason and is one that coaches should monitor moving forward.  One-time Air Force commit, Phil Cirillo added 13 points.

David Pierce

David Pierce (Saint Petersburg, FL) is a flat out shooter. This kid has one of the best shooting strokes I have seen in years. Despite the loss, the 6-foot-1 two-guard lit AC Georgia up from three point land. He finished with game-high 30 points and was a perfect 7-for-7 from the 3-point stripe. With offers already in hand from the likes of JMU, UNF, and Stetson University to name a few, expect low-mid majors to be buzzing heavy on him by tournament’s end if he continues his hot shooting.

Kowacie Reeves is a contributor to On the Radar Hoops.

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