The 2nd annual Elevate Hoops Proving Ground held its Session I this past weekend in Baltimore, Maryland, and the talent level and competition once again remained as strong as any event nationally in the Middle School age groups.
Team Thrill finished the first Proving Ground session undefeated (4-0), the Baltimore based squad had a balanced attack all weekend. Thrill’s backcourt trio of Ahmad Harrison, Darius Tilghman and Andre Crawley are all equally impressive on both ends of the floor. New Heights NYC was the only other team to go undefeated (4-0) on the weekend and were led by Jaquan Carlos’ scoring surge as he averaged 19ppg.
DC Premier (3-1) was impressive throughout the whole weekend with their group of talented young individuals who gained plenty of recognition for their play including Zion Russell, Wes Peterson Jr., and James Gross. Premier’s lone loss on the weekend was a opening game nailbiter against Team Thrill. Another team that finished (3-1) was Team Final out of Philadelphia, PA, they were led by Marcus Randolph, Zakiir Williamson and Rahsool Diggins.
Many players stood out, but Ryan Conway of Team Durant was the MOP statistically despite the struggles of his team had throughout the weekend. Conway averaged 25.5ppg including a 42 point game in the first game against Canada Elite East.
What do Sports U, Philly Triple Threat and DC Blue Devils all have in common? All three teams enjoyed tremendous success last season in the Proving Ground as 13U teams, but all three stumbled out of the gate in Session I of 2017 ending with 2-2 records across the board. Don’t sleep on these teams going forward though, each squad has great guard play and is well-coached. They will definitely hunting W’s in Session II on February 18-19 in New Jersey.
SESSION I FIRST TEAM Ryan Conway - Team Durant (MOP) Zion Russell - DC Premier Wes Peterson Jr. - DC Premier Ahmad Harrison - Team Thrill Jaquan Carlos - New Heights NYC
SESSION I SECOND TEAM Rayvon Weir - Milbank Flyers Avery Brown - NY Gauchos Jordan Longino - Philly Triple Threat Jayden Brown - Sports U Savion Jackson - DC Blue Devils
SESSION I HONORABLE MENTION Zakiir Williamson - Team Final Rasheed Dupree - DC Blue Devils Christian Clover - Philly Triple Threat Muneer Newton - We R 1 James Gross - DC Premier Dimron Phillips - Canada Elite West