If this weekend is any indication, Oldsmar Christian will be a young but talented team that make noise in the SIAA this coming season. Jadrian Tracey, a 6’5 junior wing, had some spectacular moments. Not only is he a high flyer, he’s also a skilled scorer with a dangerous assortment of one-on-one moves and an accurate jump shot out to the arc. Fellow junior Kobe Gibbs, 6’7, is another athlete that is long and gets a lot done in transition and on the glass. Sophomore point guard Ray Robinson, 5’11, pushes the pace and excels at getting into the lane and collapsing the defense. Senior 6’5 guard Braxton Bartlett provides a three point threat to keep defenses from collapsing while fellow senior 6’8 Jelal Williams scores well above the rim on offense and challenges shots on defense.
A very young team with only two seniors on the roster this past weekend, Miramar will be quite different from the one that last season reached the final four in Class 9A. However, this group appears to be talented and tenacious in its own way, so don’t count them out. Brent Davis, a 6’2 junior guard was the team’s main offensive threat on Saturday. He seemed comfortable playing either guard spot. Davis connected on jumpers off the dribble, got past the defense into the lane and scored at the rim, and moved the ball quickly to open teammates for shots. We were most impressed by 6’6 freshman Deshawn Jean-Charles. Not only did he display an accurate jumper from the perimeter, but also a consistent stroke from the free throw line and a nose for the ball coming off the offensive glass.
To be honest, it was tough to get a read on “the Flyin’ Ls” as they took on an overwhelming Montverde contingent. The team does have a solid inside-outside combo in 6’5 sophomore Jordan Shorter and 6’8 senior Damone “D.J.” Warren. Shorter is a big point guard with strength. He easily sees over most defenders to make plays with excellent court awareness and vision. Shorter also overpowers defenders when taking the ball to the basket. While he is an accomplished scorer from all three levels, Shorter is also a willing passer and generally makes good pass vs. shot decision. Warren has a nice post-up game but can also connect on shots from the high post and short corner areas of the court. He runs the floor well in transition and is a presence in the paint on the defensive end. Both Shorter and Warren played very well in the individual showcase this weekend to go along with their time running with their high school team.
Oakland Park Northeast
In the game we watched, Northeast played Oldsmar tough, falling by a single point. Unfortunately for us, Northeast wore jerseys with no numbers on them. Therefore, the only player we could identify was Wesley Cardet, a 6’5 sophomore guard. He can (and will need to) do a little bit of everything on the court. Come the high school season, don’t be surprised if Cardet is running the offense, looking to get teammates involved. However, when a bucket is needed, his number will be called.
Riviera Beach Suncoast
Of the twelve players on the Chargers’ roster, only two were seniors. Seven of those twelve were freshmen. So, either the Charges will have a very young team or a very good JV program. Outside of 5’11 senior Jakobe Cox knocking down a trio of shots from beyond the arc, 5’11 junior Samuel Rolle was the only player for Suncoast ready and able to compete in this environment. A penetrator and passer deluxe, Rolle is superb at sucking in the defense and then delivering the ball to teammates for easy shots. Despite his size, he is adept at completing plays in traffic and earning “and one” opportunities. We’d like to see him shoot a higher percentage from beyond the arc, but that is quibbling. Rolle is also a solid on-ball defender. Hopefully, 6’6 sophomore Darius Runner can provide some interior support as the high school season moves along.