Jeromy Rodriguez scored on a putback with three seconds left in overtime to help Pope John, No. 1 in the NJ.com Top 20, survive an upset bid from unranked Newark Tech, 57-56, in Sparta. Moustapha Diagne led all scorers with 16 points and rebounds for Pope John. Rodriguez, who got the tip-in off a Ray Montilus miss, finished with 12 points and 12 boards.
Coatesville’s Jay Stocker, a swift defensive back, committed Wednesday to play at Pittsburgh. The 6-foot-2, 185-pound senior was visited at school Tuesday by new Panthers coach Pat Narduzzi, who was Michigan State’s defensive coordinator the past eight seasons. “Since Narduzzi is a defensive-minded coach, I think it’s a real good fit for Jay,” Coatesville coach Matt Ortega said.
It’s crunch time for Austrian Robinson. The three-star defensive end from New York plans to make his college decision “immediately” after his final official visit on Jan. 30. He’s taken two visits already: Maryland and Miami. Two remain: Ole Miss and Ohio State. “I recently narrowed my list to those schools, so I’m just focused on them right now,” Robinson said. “It’s all starting to get pretty crazy.”
Since Gill St. Bernard’s star guard, Tyus Battle, has been sidelined with a foot injury, the Knights have resorted to several players to carry the scoring load. It’s been a collective effort for Mergin Sina’s group. Each night a new player steps into the spotlight, which is why Gill St. Bernard’s continues to battle in the tough Skyland Conference Delaware Division, even without their top player suiting up.
In the final game of the 2015 HoopHall Classic, Chaminade College Prep (MO) defeated Paul VI (VA), 88-78. In one of the best individual matchups of the entire tournament, 2016 small forwards V.J. King and Jayson Tatum went head-to-head. King, ranked 16th in the ESPN.com Super 60, led his team by erupting for a tournament-best 38 points. With UConn head coach Kevin Ollie sitting front and center, the smooth 6-foot-7 wing showed why he’s one of the most versatile players in his class. Tatum, ranked No. 1 in the ESPN.com Super 60, finished with a team-high 25 points. He is considering UConn among the schools on his final list of 10.
Fresh off of winning his 999th game, Coach K, alongside Duke Associate Head Coach Jeff Capel, is currently watching 6’10” Harry Giles, according to Rick Lewis of Phenom Hoops. Giles has helped lead Wesleyan Christian Academy (NC) to 21-3 record, currently ranked in the top ten by MaxPreps. In his last game against Oak Hill, Harry scored 25 points and 13 rebounds at the Bass Pro Tournament of Champions in Missouri. Coaches love Giles versatility, skill level, athleticism, and upside. Harry Giles can overpower defenders inside and has a variety of low-post moves or step outside and hit a fifteen footer as a stretch four.
For Frank Howard, all those pent-up months of longing to play basketball, of proving he belonged in conversations about elite high school talent, altered the way he approached Monday’s Hoophall Classic. “Sometimes I just get caught up with trying to show everybody that this is what I can do,” the Syracuse basketball recruit said. “Instead of making that easy basketball play, I try to show everybody that ‘Wow’ play. It’s something I really gotta get out of my game.”