Sweet Sixteen Session 2 – Friday Night Impression-Makers
WOODSTOCK, GA – Camped at Sequoyah for Friday’s block of action as another gigantic OTR Sweet Sixteen, this one Session 2, took to the courts of the ATL-Metro.
Got a rare chance to take in some 16U action during the Live Period, which is generally reserved for evaluating the next in line 17’s. Some guys who made Impressions:
By: Keith Agran
Ever since last March during our first trip to Daytona Beach XPC has been on my radar, solid organization which brings both energized and skilled play to the OTR roster of tournaments, Pope was among 3 or 4 guys on this 16U iteration that impressed with the traits mentioned above, pace-pusher and excellent finisher for a guy hovering around 6-0, played off the ball quite a bit as everyone handles it for this club but I like him as a scoring PG down the road.
Went nose to nose with Pope and XPC’s depth at guard and showed off both a flair for escaping and converting and a deadly jump shot which was 22 feet out at times, the slick handle was needed against the pressure he and the Hawks saw and he added a handful of brilliant feeds when things bogged down, but he’s a scorer and shooter at heart and should feature prominently with the top 17U Hawks teams next year.
Really enjoy seeing the Tennessee Tigers rolling in for our stuff as they always have guys to keep an eye on, Degnan was this group’s John Stockton as he was cool and calm and slyly found his way into gaps for offense and distribution, didn’t miss too many easy ones and that’s easier said than done, good shooter and got at the basket a bunch but you have to love the composed floor leader aspect he brings.
Zach Bleshoy | G | 2025 | Atlanta Timberwolves 16U
The fourth of 5 PG’s who made a quick impression right from the first tip on Friday night, Bleshoy is one of the Georgia class of 2025’s most rapid risers at the PG spot and it continues to build, had a fine sophomore season leading the Pope offense and did his fair share of scoring as well, excellent decision-maker and a tad faster with the first step than he might appear on tape, one to keep a close eye on for sure.
A lot of power as a closer packed into a 6-0 frame as he played much bigger than that with his explosiveness off the deck, heady defender had his hands in a lot of things, a more than willing passer it was the creative and often contact-induced finishing which caught eyes like a running back in football pinging off defenders, has plenty of talent to put the 6-0 and under arguments to rest.
Clyde Walters | G/F | 2026 | Alabama Fusion 15U (pictured at top)
Playing up in 16’s as they often do this group was back at it after I saw them terrorize the competition at our Birmingham Classic a few weeks back, teammates Sam Funches, Ladarius Givan and others were along as well but this was my first look at Walters, played a lot of PG for them at 6-6 and that created all kinds of trouble for smaller AOT, I use the word slithery a fair amount and he fits that bill as a driver as he showed off excellent vision too as a dealer, clearly a high major future ahead.
The lone 17U game at Sequoyah featured ENG and their varied roster of mostly guys from the Upper Northwest of the state of GA, a Rome HS guy AcAboy was active playing alongside in particular the talented Heard brothers Jakenes and Jeremias from nearby Model HS, going around 6-6 he has some work to do on the creative side of his offense but the athleticism and instincts as an around-the-basket guy intrigue for sure.
Lamar was a terrific discovery on the 15U trail last year and should be a big part of what could be a Final 4-level South Paulding group coming back next year, right around 6-0 he’s built Ford-Tough and uses that to barrel his way past guys for a lot of and-1’s, likes to pull it from deep too and has a great-looking stroke off the catch and pull, stellar athlete who makes the hard look easy and those kind of things bring eyeballs and draw chatter around the recruiting circles.
Keith Agran has lived in Georgia since 2011 and joined OTR as a National Evaluator in 2021. He previously scouted for Prep Hoops dating back to 2019, and also spent 3 years as a sports writer at two newspapers in New Jersey. After a championship-coaching background on the HS-level also in NJ, he accepted the Girl’s Basketball Head Coaching position in May 2022 at Mt Bethel Christian Academy and now balances scouting and coaching still with a keen eye on talent around the region. You can reach him at email@example.com and follow him on Twitter @BracketSage.
November 27, 2023
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