Battle for the Arch: Day Three

ST. LOUIS, Mo. - The Battle for the Arch concluded on Sunday as Ishmael Wainwright and his KC 76ers teammates took home the title, while Kendrick Nunn and the Meanstreets 16's continued a strong spring after their win last week at Boo Williams. Meanwhile, Malcolm Hill showed that in the 2013 class, he'll be a name to remember.

Broderick Newbill, SG, KC 76ers – Newbill was solid all weekend and seems to have finally started to figure out his game after growing a few inches to 6-6. He was active on both ends, finished above the rim, shot the ball well off-the-catch and hit the glass hard for a wing player. His upside is solid.

Jay Simpson, PF, Illinois Wolves – In the title game loss to the 76ers, Simpson had it going early from the outside. Also impressive was the counter move he displayed in the post that led to a soft right-handed hook. His biggest issue, however is playing in and around the paint. It's not that Jay can't he just seems reluctant to do so.

Ishmael Wainwright, SF, KC 76ers – Minus a few cramps in the title game, another superb day for Wainwright. His patience really stood out on Sunday, as he didn't try to force things even as the 76ers marched through a talented field on their way to the title. He's a better passer than given credit for and didn't try to take more than his man off the dribble and into trouble.

Malcolm Hill, SG, SW Jets 16s – If stat gurus kept statistics on efficiency in the world of grassroots basketball, this kid's numbers would be off-the-charts. He's the dangerous young prospect that is already a great athlete while also having a very high basketball IQ. Hill gets to the rim, has excellent vision, knocks in some jumpers, and moves very well without the ball. He also gets to the free throw line regularly and got there 16 times in one game on Sunday. He's got the look of a big-time prospect.

Kendrick Nunn, SG, Meanstreets 16's – Helped lead the Meanstreets to another title by putting in the game-winning bucket against Spiece Indy Heat. He doesn't have to score much on this balanced team, but he still plays his tail off and really gets after it on the defensive end.

Jaylon Tate, PG, Meanstreets 16's – Tate is having a very strong spring and it continued in St. Louis. A taller point guard, Tate excels in situations that involve getting up-and-down the floor in transition. While the speed of the game leads to turnovers for many young floor generals, Tate's vision and passing allow him to find teammates while hitting them in full stride. His bigger frame lets him get to the rim against smaller guards as well.

Kendall Stephens, SF, Illinois Wolves 16's – The Purdue commit shot the ball well at times and did a nice job on the defensive end as well. Although he cooled off a bit against Meanstreets, Kendall does a nice job maneuvering through screens in the half-court game to get himself open. He's got long arms and big hands and if he tacks on a few more inches to his 6-5 frame, Stephens is going to be scary to defend.

Jahlil Okafor, C, Mac Irvin Fire 16's – He didn't get as many post touches as usual, but Okafor hit the offensive glass hard and got to the free throw line. It's always nice to see a young center that doesn't shy away from contact and wants to post up every time down the floor. As more lift and athleticism come with age, he'll be a dominant force inside.

Credit goes to Jeff White of the Illinois Wolves, as he was one of the few members of the team not settling for jumpers and attacking the rim.

Alvin Ellis plays high school ball with Jaylon Tate, and the two have great chemistry on the Meanstreets 16's. Ellis attacks the rim hard.

Jalen James isn't a household name in Chicago, yet. Playing at a smaller school like Hope hasn't given him big exposure, but the point guard has a big-time feel for the game and makes other guys around him better.

DeShawn Munson's vision was outstanding on Sunday. When defenders get drawn to him as he attacks the basket, he always plays his cards right and finds a cutter, or draws a foul.

Sterling Brown can fall in love with his jumper a bit too much. A member of the Mac Irvin Fire 16's and younger brother of Shannon Brown, Sterling settled for contested looks too often on Sunday against the Illinois Wolves. His future is bright.

Broderick Newbill claims to have an offer from Wichita State while Missouri State, Northern Colorado, Colorado, Memphis, Creighton and Missouri-Kansas City have all shown interest.

Malcolm Hill says that Michigan, Illinois and Ohio State are on him the hardest while Tennessee, Wisconsin, Purdue and Notre Dame have also been in touch. He has no scholarship offers, yet.


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