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Notables from the St. Pete Pre-Season Showdown

By Rick Staudt, 11/28/17, 6:45PM CST


Denari Garrett:  A 6’6 senior from Tampa Sickles, Garrett pretty much had his way on the inside against Leesburg.  He showed a soft touch around the basket, both on post-ups and on putbacks.  A lean athlete, he got up and down the floor well in transition and finished above the rim.  Garett also knocked down a couple of threes and looked comfortable doing so.  Still, it was his work around the basket that deserves praise.  Defensively he covers a lot of ground on the perimeter and his length can be disruptive in the passing lanes.

Zack Mathis: A wispy 6’7 senior from Tampa Berkeley Prep, Mathis caught our attention with his play out on the perimeter.  For a guy his size, he showed decent skills in dribbling and passing the basketball.  He made good decisions on the move with the ball and on more than one occasions engineered the Berkeley transition game.  Mathis struggled with his jumper but the form on his shot is solid.  He’s alert to get the ball inside to cutters and post players.  A good but not explosive athlete, Mathis does have some length to his wing span and anticipates well in the passing lanes.

Thierry Moliere: A strongly built 6’0 senior out of Tampa Jesuit, Moliere was quite impressive on Saturday.  On one particular play, he drove the lane and attempted a dunk in traffic that if he had completed it, would have sent the gym into chaos.  While he didn’t connect on any of his three point attempts, Moliere was solid in the mid-range area, rising up and knocking down jump shots either coming off ball screens or using various fakes to create space and rise up over defenders.  While he did make some plays as Jesuit’s set up guy, the team clearly needs him to score to be successful.  Defensively his upper-body strength and lateral speed make him a pesky defender.

Jamille Reynolds: A 6’8 sophomore from St. Pete Lakewood, Reynolds was a presence in the post that Berkeley Prep had no answer for.  His go-to move was a right-handed jump hook both in the lane and along the baseline.  Reynolds has a good frame and is quite mobile for a young big.  He rebounds his area well on the defensive end and challenges opponents when they enter the lane.  While there is certainly more work to do to polish his skills at both ends of the court, Reynolds’ upside is plenty evident.

Tre Gilliam: A 5’10 sophomore from St. Pete Gibbs, Gilliam did his best to take up the slack from the injured David Pierce.  Despite being the focus of the St. Pete defense, Gilliam was able to get points for himself and did a good job of setting up teammates for easy looks who all too often failed to connect.  Gilliam made good decisions coming off of ball screens, sensing when he had room to split defenders, find the roll man, or rise up from mid-range and knock down open shots when the defense failed to adjust.  He was fast with the ball in transition but didn’t get out of control.  Opponents that overlook him due to his size do so at their own peril.