The 2015 Hall of Fame Huddle NEO Showcase took place this past weekend at Walsh University in North Canton, Ohio. Event organizer Rich Harland (@HOFHuddle_Rich) welcomed over 100 basketball players ranging from 8th grade to 12th grade from all over the state of Ohio to participate and be seen by college coaches.
With over 20 colleges and universities represented, the second annual event was easily deemed a success. In addition to playing games with new teammates and having to acclimate themselves to a new style of play, the young ladies were also put through a battery of drills and tests for the coaches in attendance to get a look at them and determine if they should be given the opportunity to compete for their respective teams in the future.
Some of the players that stood out to me during the day long event are listed below (note: I did not get a chance to see everyone nearly as much as I would have liked to with over 100 players and 3 games taking place at one time):
Taylor Mikesell (Sophomore, Jackson) – This young lady is not only a fantastic dribbler, but her decision making, court awareness and basketball IQ will put her easily near the top of her recruiting class for most D1 colleges and their wish lists very soon.
Caitlin Tytler (Senior, Jackson) – For the second Showcase in a row the sparkplug from Jackson impressed the coaches and scouts in attendance by doing all of the little things well. A hard nosed defender with a high motor, Tytler is also a very aggressive rebounder and played well for the Lilac team alongside high school teammate Mikesell. Talking with some college coaches during the event, they really liked what they say in Caitlin.
Naudier Becton (Sophomore, Jackson) – If Jackson does not have a banner year with the trio of Mikesell, Tytler and Becton I will be shocked. A lightning quick guard and unselfish passer, Becton makes good decisions on the court to always put her team in prime position to score at will.
Savannah Maynard (Sophomore, Green) – A nice rebounder with a solid nose for the ball, she will be a defensive presence for years to come as she doesn’t graduate until 2018.
Ahmarianna West (Freshman, Toledo Notre Dame) – One of the quickest first steps I have seen out of a young lady in quite some time, Ahmarianna can flat out fly with the basketball in her hands.
Brandie Snow (Senior, Lake) – A standout last season in both the combine and her high school year as a Junior at Lake, Snow has the capability to play a lot of places on the floor and play them well. High basketball IQ and good leadership along with a toughness to do the dirty work make her one of my favorite players to watch play on the court. While she might be a late signer, wherever she ends up will be getting a quality player.
Mikayla Poole (Sophomore, Carrollton) – Not only can she fly with the ball in her hands up and down the floor, but she is also a solid finisher at the rim who is not afraid to take contact and get to the line.
Jenna Strayer (Junior, Bellevue) – One of the best players all day that I saw play in terms of getting herself to the free throw line. During her teams games every time I looked up during the day she was at the free throw line. Gritty player with a toughness about her.
Lexee Miller (Junior, New Philadelphia) – Probably one of the most solid across the board players I watched play all day long, there is not a lot that she did not do well.
Kennedy Schlabach (Sophomore, Hiland) – One of six Hiland Hawks that made their way to the combine this season, it shouldn’t shock you to know she has a great understanding and awareness while on the court as her father, the legendary coach legendary Dave Schlabach. Being a coaches kid I would imagine has its pitfalls, but also its advantages and she has clearly taken his advice to heart as she is a quick and scrappy player.
Jayla Hall (Junior, Amherst) – If you need a forward to do your dirty work and keep the opposing team off of the glass, Jayla is that player. A good defender with room to grow, Jayla pulled down a ton of rebounds for her Cardinal squad while I was watching them and then quickly threw up the floor to start the offensive attack.
Natalie Wilson (Sophomore, Perry) – A smart passer that always has her head up and is looking up court to find an open teammate.
Taylor Geib (Senior, Ravenna) – A young lady with nice length on the front line and who gets a lot of rebounds.
Peyton Banks (Sophomore, Wadsworth) – Tough with a nice drop step, this young lady runs the floor very well and can hit the open jumper with range.
One of the teams that stood out the most for me as a whole was the Red squad coached by Lipscomb University guard Lexi Manos. Manos’ team featured a handful of young ladies that impressed in their abilities individually and in their effort to gel quickly as a team:
Ang Troyer (Junior, Hiland) – Another one of the Hiland players who had a terrific afternoon in North Canton. A solid all-around player who doesn’t seem to overly excel in any one thing on the floor, but does everything well will no doubt help lead the Hawks to another long run in March in the tournament.
Morgan McMillen (Sophomore, Hiland) – A Sophomore point guard transfer, she possesses a high basketball IQ and court awareness that could pretty much describe any of the point guards for Hiland, but none moreso than of McMillen. A nice passer and a solid leader, she raised more than a few eyebrows with the college coaches in attendance and likely will for years to come.
Emma Rankin (Junior, West Branch) – A nice shooter with touch on the wings, there didn’t seem to be very many places Rankin couldn’t knock down a shot from on the afternoon.
Kaylee Pierce (Sophomore, Massillon) – Yet another fantastic Sophomore, Pierce has a quick first step and can terrorize opponents as they attempt to guard her off the dribble. A smart defender as well, she rarely will put herself in a bad position where she will need to call for help.
There were MANY MANY more great ballers that I wish I could have gotten to see more, but trust me there are a ton you will soon be hearing about allover the state of Ohio once the season begins. Please feel free to take a to take a listen to myself and Rich Harland (HOF Huddle Website) discuss the event in the video below:
Pictures from the event: