No doubt that when this game was originally scheduled, it was to be a matchup between the two top center prospects in the 2019 Class: 7’3 Chol Marial from IMG and 7’0 Balsa Kaprovica of Windermere Prep. Sadly, that didn’t occur as both were held out of the game due to Coach’s Decision. IMG was also without two other key players: 6’2 senior Keyshawn Embry, an Arkansas signee, was nursing a sore knee and 6’5 sophomore Noah Farrakhan was out due to illness. Still, it was a chance to see a very talented IMG squad featuring Kansas signee Silvio De Sousa and LSU recruit Darius Days.
The game went pretty much as expected. Without the presence of Kaprovica for Windermere Prep, IMG had a serious size advantage. The Ascenders controlled the interior, forcing Windermere Prep to shoot primarily long, contested jump shots. IMG, far more often than not, limited the Lakers to one shot and quickly got the ball up the court, scoring most of their points in transition. In the second quarter when IMG increased their lead from nine points to 29 points, only one of their made baskets was not at the rim. The running clock kicked in midway thru the third period with the score 67-31. IMG ultimately won by the score of 89-48.
Days was the top scorer for IMG with 27 points, the vast majority coming at the basket. He did knock down a pair of long range jumpers but was just 2-7 on shots from the perimeter. He also didn’t need to create many shots on his own thanks to his ability to catch and score quickly upon receiving the ball in the lane. Days also led the Ascenders in rebounds with 14. He turned at least three of those into assists with long outlet passes for easy scores by teammates.
De Sousa contributed 19 points in the game and seemingly did so with ease. All but one of his baskets came in transition. When he did get the ball in the post, he was quick to relocate it out to the perimeter once he noticed the double-team coming. His lone post move was a face-up, quick drive along the baseline that turned into a three point play. He also tallied 5 rebounds, 4 steals, and 1 block in the contest. There are unconfirmed reports that he plans to head to Kansas for the second semester to help the Jayhawks continue their streak of thirteen consecutive Big 12 championships.
Also tossing in 19 points was 6’5 junior Josh Green. After connecting on a three early in the first quarter, the athletic slasher focused almost solely on getting to the basket. Green scored on a couple of floaters in the lane and finished in traffic on a couple of baseline drives. He appears to be a solid ball-handler and passer along the perimeter and when on the move. Green also finished with 2 rebounds and 2 assists as his minutes were limited as the game got less competitive.
Arguably the most impressive performer for IMG was 6’4 junior Jahmius Ramsey. Assuming the role of point guard, he used his height to see over the smaller Windermere Prep defenders and repeatedly found teammates for easy scores at the basket. Ramsey racked up eight assists during the course of the contest and few of the transition variety. After nailing an early three, he too decided to get to the basket and found little defensive challenge. Ramsey concluded the game with 13 points. His size and quickness to the ball makes him a solid rebounder from the backcourt and he is also an alert defender. Ramsey’s state line included 6 rebounds and three steals.