PUNTA GORDA — The 14th annual Wally Keller Classic wrapped up Saturday with 12 games at Charlotte High School. Here are my top 5 Takeaways:
TAMPA CATHOLIC SURPASSES CENTURY MARK
Tampa Catholic looks primed to make a run in Class 4A. The Crusaders, who start five seniors, were impressive in blowing by Naples, 102-93. Morehead State 6-foot-9 signee Johni Broome led the way with 36 points, while 6-5 G Kobe Knox added 25. Knox has an offer on the table from North Florida. He is a young 17 and could go the prep school route. Tampa Catholic (14-5) has good size and really gets out and runs. “We’ve played three teams that are nationally ranked in the Top 25 and then we’ll play one team later on — Huntington Prep — who is ranked like 19th,” said Crusaders coach Don Dziagwa. Two of TC’s five losses are to Montverde Academy and IMG Academy (2 OTs). The other starters are 6-8 Isaiah Elmore (visited Le Moyne College), 6-1 Marcellus Crutchfield and 6-5 Alijah Harrison. Crutchfield also plays football and has a couple of offers there as a wide receiver.
GUARD SHOWDOWN GOES TO DORAL’S CARTER
The highly-anticipated guard match-up between Doral Academy senior Devin Carter and East Lake senior Dionte Blanch ended up being one-sided. Carter and Doral led throughout, including 53-33 going to the fourth quarter, in a 64-52 verdict. The 6-4 Carter finished with 29 points — 18 in the second half. Foul trouble hurt Blanch, who had just 4 points in the first half. The 6-3 Murray State commit then picked up his fourth foul with 7:10 still remaining in the third quarter. Blanch picked it up late to finish with 18 points. Carter’s recruitment remains open. FIU was his first scholarship offer. Since he has landed, College of Charleston, DePaul, East Carolina, FAU, Georgia Tech, Richmond, South Carolina and VCU. Brothers Justin Johnson (2023) and Kameron Johnson (2021) added 15 and 14 points, respectively, for Jorge Fernandez‘s 6A squad (12-2).
‘DEEBO’ IS COLLEGE-READY NOW
Dallan “Deebo” Coleman is just a junior, but the 6-6 scoring machine already looks college-ready. The Callahan West Nassau combo guard has a strong body, a beautiful stroke on offense that stretches the floor and excellent anticipation on defense.
Coleman hit seven 3-pointers and went for 32 points in a 67-46 handling of Fort Myers Riverdale. In the second half, he was 6 for 7 from the field and 5 of 5 at the free-throw line. Recruiting-wise, “he’s real open,” West Nassau coach Ran Coleman said. “The guys in on him the most are Alabama, Campbell, Clemson, Florida, Florida State, Georgetown, Georgia Tech, Iowa State, Memphis, Oklahoma State, UNF and Wake Forest.” Louisville and Notre Dame are also showing interest. 6-3 2021 point guard Justin Hicks added 18 points. Hicks has a good handle, penetrates and is a very good passer. Hicks had offers Ole Miss and Tulane prior to coaching changes.
SHANEYFELT LEAVES WITH BRACE ON
Bradenton’s Lakewood Ranch took Sanford Seminole to overtime before falling, 63-56. It was a tough a weekend for coach Jeremy Schiller & Co. The Mustangs were already without 6-1 2020 guard Keon Buckley (undisclosed reasons). Then late Friday night, 6-7 senior Luke Lecroy came up with strep throat and Saturday 6-6 senior Christian Shaneyfelt (D-2 Rollins College recruit) went down twice in a heap with a right knee injury. Shaneyfelt left with a brace on and will likely be evaluated this week. … Senior guard O’shea Baker led Class 7A Seminole (17-1) with 17 points.
6A Bartow blew out Venice to go to 18-1. The Yellow Jackets led 60-18 at the half. …
South Miami 5-10 junior guard Arturo Dean reminds me so much of Toru Dean, now a freshman at Barry University. Arturo Dean can score it — he had 22 in a 64-45 W over St. Pete Lakewood — but he also shows excellent vision and passing. And he rebounds from his guard spot. …
Naples coach Garrett Hull says juniors Tony Green (6-6, G) and Byntley Theork (5-8, G) have college “interest but nothing definite or solid.” Theork squats 435 pounds parallel. Hull said he has worked with Green on his motor for the next level. The weight room has helped Green build aggression.
If you have high school or travel basketball information, you can reach Pat Lammer at PatALammer@Gmail.com