Above The Rim: West Kentucky Hoops Classic

De’Sean Allen-Eikens – Aspire Academy (KY) – Class of 2019 – Shooting Guard/Small Forward

In game one for Aspire Academy, De’Sean Allen-Eikens led all scorers with 21 points in a win over Cy-Fair Learning Center (TX). He scored the majority of his points by attacking the basket and and finishing at the rim or drawing contact and knocking down free throws as he went 8 for 9 from the line. Allen-Eikens also stepped out behind the arc to knock down a three-point jumper and gave a great effort on the boards as he hauled in 7 rebounds.

He continued his impressive play in game two with 19 points and 4 rebounds against Westridge Academy (NC). Allen-Eikens moved well without the ball and slashed to the basket where teammates would find him cutting for inside shots, and once again showed he can knock down the long ball when open as he went 2 for 2 from three-point range.

Sekou Sada Kaile – Aspire Academy (KY) – Class of 2021 – Center

While going scoreless in his first game, Sekou Sada Kaile exploded for 20 points in game two against Westridge Academy (NC). With Westridge focusing most of their attention towards star big man Charles Bassey, Kaile was able to get open under the basket and finish around the rim on 9 of 14 shooting from the floor. Just a freshman, he has a lot of time to develop, but once he grows into his body and learns from playing alongside Bassey, Kaile could potentially be one of the best big men in his class.

Jourdan Smith – Cy-Fair Learning Center (TX) – Class of 2019 – Shooting Guard/Small Forward

This was my first look at Cy-Fair Learning Center, so as I get familiarized with the team Jourdan Smith’s play jumped out the most. He led his team in scoring with 12 points behind the strength of two three-point jumpers and also hauled in 4 rebounds. At 6’7″, with a long, wiry frame Smith looked like a potential Division 1 wing. Combining long-range and mid-range jumpers for all of his points, Smith is a strong shooter that could be a future mid-major player

Lamond Johnson – Cy-Fair Learning Center (TX) – Class of 2019 – Point Guard

Johnson was a solid spark off the bench for Cy-Fair Learning Center. He’s a guy that can score in bunches and has a big, physical frame that allows him to attack the basket and finish strong through contact. He finished his first game with 8 points and scored 9 in his second game, but seemed to score those points at times where Cy-Fair needed a basket to get them going.

Courtland Soll – St. Louis Christian Academy (MO) – Class of 2019 – Combo Guard

St. Louis Christian was another team I was getting my first glance at and they had standout performances from multiple guys starting with 2019 combo guard Courtland Soll. He led his team in scoring in their win against Westridge Academy (NC) with 17 points while also dishing out 5 assists. In game two against Cy-Fair Learning Center (TX) Soll finished with 13 points. Soll scored in a variety of ways as he hit three-point shots, floaters, driving lay-ups, and took advantage of his opportunities at the free throw line. Creighton and Central Arkansas have shown interest.

Bailey Dee – St. Louis Christian Academy (MO) – Class of 2018 – Point Guard

For Bailey Dee to have no Division 1 offers was surprising after seeing him play at the West Kentucky Hoops Classic. He managed the game well at the point guard spot and in game one scored 8 of his 12 points in the first quarter behind two three-pointers. His second game was even more impressive, as he scored 16 points and grabbed 7 rebounds, while leading a strong second-half comeback that fell just short. He has a strong, running-back like build, but at 6’0″ has the athletic ability to compensate where he lacks height.

Ivan Mikhiev – St. Louis Christian Academy (MO) – Class of 2018 – Small Forward

Mikhiev was without a doubt the best shooter I saw at the West Kentucky Hoops Classic. He went 6 for 6 from three-point range for all 18 of his points against Westridge Academy (NC); anytime he was open the shot was automatic. He proved the ability to knock down shots from distance in his second game as well, shooting 2 for 4 from behind the arc on his way to 9 points. When Division 1 schools find out about this sharpshooter they’ll be offering as he can knock down the long ball with ease and consistency.

Steven Randle – Westridge Academy (NC) – Class of 2018 – Power Forward

Randle was one of few bright spots for Westridge Academy in their loss to St. Louis Christian in game one. He finished with 15 points and hauled in 8 rebounds. In his second game against Aspire Academy (KY) Randle carried the load for his team again as he finished with a double-double, scoring 18 points and grabbing 10 rebounds.

Axavius Stricklen – Corinth (MS) – Class of 2018 – Combo Guard

Stricklen was the best player on the floor even though his team lost to Dyersburg (TN) in game one. He scored 19 points coming from strong drives to the basket and transition dunks. Stricklen also knocked down a couple threes. Against Ridgeway (TN) in game two he turned it up another notch, this time going for 25 points and 6 rebounds. The Morehead State signee proved why he’ll be playing Division 1 ball.

Derrin Boyd – Caldwell County (KY) – Class of 2019 – Combo Guard

Boyd was the best player for the host team of the West Kentucky Hoops Classic and went for 28 points and 6 rebounds in his game one loss to Ridgeway (TN). In that game he went 3 for 5 from three-point range and 9 for 13 from the free throw line for the majority of his points, but also made a couple nice drives to the basket. In his second game, this time against Dyersburg (TN) Boyd turned in a 18 point and 9 rebound performance in the loss.

 

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