#OTRHoopsReport – Underclassmen from the Georgia Challenge – Oct. 1, 2014
Class of 2017 wing Lance Thomas of Norcross, Ga., headlined many talented underclassmen at the Georgia Challenge. Photo cred – Ty Freeman
DULUTH, Ga. – The Georgia Challenge presented by On the Radar Hoops is the place to be to face the region’s top talent and getting great exposure. This year over 100 high school prospects packed into Joe Marelle Gymnasium at Duluth High School to make a name for themselves. Here are several underclassmen who helped their name get on the radar for the upcoming high school season.
Underclassmen Make a Name at the Georgia Challenge
Brian Coffey (Lilburn, Ga.), – Greater Atlanta Christian School – 2017
Coffey is a point guard with good size standing at 6-foot-1. He puts us in the mind of another class of 2017 point guard in the area, Kendrick Summerour of Marietta, Ga. Coffey has plenty of wiggle with the ball in his hands and can put flash into making plays without trying to do too much. The skilled sophomore will have an opportunity to contribute this year for coach Eddie Martin while suiting up for the Spartans. If his play at the Georgia Challenge is any indication of his production this high school season, we could be hearing a lot more from Cooks.
RayShaun Hammonds (Norcross, Ga.), – Norcross HS – 2017
We identified Hammonds a year ago at the OntheRadarHoops.com Fall Showcase as a prospect of great potential. Standing at a lanky 6-7 tall with perimeter skill, Hammonds has the pedigree to be a highly recruited prospect moving into his next years of high school. Right now the forward is most comfortable handling the ball in the open court and with space he can get to the mouth of the rim to finish above the out-stretched arms of defenders in the lane. Watch for him to flourish this season within coach McMillan’s system at Norcross.
Zephaniah Jasper (Augusta, Ga.), – Laney HS – 2016
Jasper continued his impressive display of skill that we first saw at the Nike EYBL Peach Jam Sweet 16 over two months ago. The confident ball handler showed his ability make plays for others and himself at the Georgia Challenge. He consistently attacked the lane to score while also showing his shooting touch from beyond the arc. His recruitment is already moving at a fast pace with schools such as Alabama, Furman, Kennesaw State, Tennessee Tech among others already in to see him this fall.
Kentravious Jones (Macon, Ga.), – Central HS – 2017
One of the big men in the gym at the Georgia Challenge was the 6-11 center from Middle Georgia. Jones possesses a frame that gives him significant power over his opponents. He is able to use his body to leverage himself around opponents to get angles to rebound and score. Although a power player, he has soft touch that allows him to score around the bucket. He even showed a nice step back jumper while posting up on the block. While he is far from a finished product, Jones will become a name that we will talk about for years to come.
Anthony Showell (Duluth, Ga.), – Duluth HS – 2016
A player that has shown marked improvement in his game since the beginning of this year is Showell. The 6′ point guard is showing more confidence with his jumper than we have ever seen before. However, the strength of his game continues to center around his play-making ability with the ball in his hands. Showell’s sneaky footwork and quick downhill step allows him to speed past off balance defenders. Look for him to take a more active leadership role this year while playing for the Wildcats.
Lance Thomas (Norcross, Ga.), – Norcross HS – 2017
Thomas proved to be the player who is most likely to make the biggest splash in the state of Georgia in the sophomore. At 6-7 Thomas played with the ball in his hands a fair amount of time and made the plays that you would expect from a lead handler. Thomas still projects as a bigger wing long-term and showed those wing play-making skills at the Georgia Challenge. His ability to get shots off in the mid-range appears to be his greatest strength at the moment. He has great ‘shake’ with his footwork to shoot over smaller defenders. While he also has the explosion to get to the rim around slower opponents. Thomas recently picked up an offer from Kennesaw State and is poised to pick up even more with this skill set.
Coach Eddie Hood and Duluth High School will be set on the inside and on the perimeter with class of 2016 prospects 6-6 post AJ Cheeseman and 6-2 wing KJ Jefferies. Both contributed in game play at the Georgia Challenge.
Point guard Zach Cooks of Norcross High School showed that he is making strides as a prospect. The class of 2017 guard is quick to slash into the lane with either hand.
Interior player Cameron Diggs of Leflore, Ala., embraced the role of a big man in the camp setting. It paid off as well as he caught the eye of many observers in the gym. He rebounded and finished well with the jump hook in the lane.
A player that we should grow to like more each viewing is Derrick Cook from Langston Hughes High School. The class of 2017 wing stands at 6-4 and reminds us of Collins Hill wing Kai Lambert.
Exposure and Showcase Opportunities:
Jonathan Hemingway is a National Evaluator for the OTRHoopsReport. He is also the publisher of CoachHemi.com. 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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