#OTRHoopsReport – Elijah Weems In Focus – March 28, 2014

Editor’s Note: “In Focus” is a feature of OntheRadarHoops.com to give readers an in depth view of notable basketball players from around the state of Georgia.
*Photo by Nakita Hemingway

By: @JLHemingwayPSB

Occasionally the world of basketball will find a player who does it the right way and is rewarded. That is impression that we got when we talked with Elijah Weems of Walton High School. He is a young man that followed the formula of hard work and persistence that eventually paid off both individually and for his team.

His senior season resulted in a 24-6 record and a Sweet 16 birth for the school in Marietta, Ga. As Weems said “We put a lot of hard work in as a team and it paid off with one of the best season’s our school has ever had.”

However, the season that Weems put together individually did not occur over night. His preparation began months before the opening game even tipped off. The 6-foot-3 shooting guard said “I worked with my trainer specifically to get in the best physical shape that could I be in, because I knew my minutes were going to increase. I also spent time getting stronger in the weight room.”

Weems also talked about the skill development work that he put in to make sure that he was ready to help his team and get ready for the next level. “We worked a lot on my outside shot and my ball handling. I knew that my team needed me to be a scoring guard. I also knew if I were going to play at the college level, those skills needed to improve.”

If you had a chance to watch Weems this year, you may not have realized that the now shooting guard once played exclusively in the post. As he told OntheRadarHoops.com “I grew to be 6-1 very quickly and had always played inside. I hope to grow taller, but it did not happen. So I had to transition my game to the perimeter. It has been a process!”

And the process definitely paid off for Weems and his teammates as they nearly took down national powerhouse Wheeler High School in the region championship. Weems says it was the highlight of the year, “It is those moments that make you want to keep playing. That is why you play. I know we lost, but we came back from 18 points and lost at the buzzer in overtime. It was a fun game!”

Weems scored 39 points in that game and immediately propelled himself into the attention of everyone as a player that people needed to know. As a result several schools have been in contact with the left-handed scoring guard. He says, “I plan on working out with Wofford soon. I also worked out with the assistant coach from Elon and Florida Atlantic University has been in contact with me also.”

However, Weems’ parting statement is a testament to his humility and work ethic as he said, “My focus is to be prepared for whatever comes my way.”

Given how Weems has persevered throughout his high school playing days, he is definitely set up for success at the next level.

Jonathan HemingwayJonathan Hemingway is a National Evaluator for the OTRHoopsReport. He is also the owner of Coach Hemingway Basketball. He has been involved in the community since 1996 as a coach, camp director and evaluator. You can reach him via email at JonathanHemingway@PeachStateBasketball.com and follow him on twitter @JLHemingwayPSB

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