SUWANEE, Ga. -- Jawun Evans lead the SC Raptors Elite to the 17's crown, while a host of freshman prospects stood out on the final day of the Bob Gibbons TOC.
During an early round game Saturday morning, Jawun Evans
looked like he was just going through the motions.
That quickly changed.
In the quarterfinals against the Georgia Stars, Evans, a 6-foot point guard, turned his game up a notch, torching them for 15 points in the first half and helping SC Raptors Elite cruise to a blowout win.
The semi-finals and championship were much of the same, as Evans led the SC Raptors to a blow out wins over Each 1 Teach and Atlanta Xpress to take the Bob Gibbons TOC 17's crown. Evans, who scored 14 points in the championship, took home the tournament MVP award.
Evans' pure speed impacts the game on both ends of the floor. The opposition didn't stand a chance keeping him in front. He lived in the paint and consistently got to the rim for lay ups or dished off pinpoint passes to teammates for easy baskets. On defense, he was a pest, making things difficult on opposing guards.
Already regarded as one of the top lead guards in the class, Evans solidified his status this weekend as a top tier guard. To go with his elite speed and ability to create for teammates, he also made a handful of mid-range pull-ups.
Danjel Purifoy, SF/PF, Atlanta Xpress – One of the primary reasons the Xpress made it to the championship was due to Purifoy's play. At 6-foot-7, the combo forward was active, aggressive and a live body in the paint. He's a very good athlete that finishes well at the rim and rebounds his area. He also has potential as a defender, as he can defend the four and the five.
Doral Moore, C, Atlanta Xpress – The difference between Moore this summer and last summer is significant. While he's much improve, he's still just scratching the surface of what he could become. Moore, a 6-foot-11 center, runs the floor with ease, protects the rim and appears to be gaining athleticism, as he matures. He had a number of power slams this weekend, but also showed consistency with his mid-range jumper and touch inside. Moore has a high ceiling and a tremendous upside.
Lavar Batts, PG, Team CP3 15's –Batts, a 6-foot-1 wiry guard, may have been the most impressive prospect of the day. The MVP of the 15's division led his team to a championship. Batts has terrific speed and quickness, but what separates him from fast guards is his ability to change direction at full speed. He also has a strong handle, good vision and is a crafty finisher at the rim. Just a freshman, Batts already has a few schools recruiting him, and I'd expect that list would expand to elite high majors.
Elias Harden, SG, Atlanta Xpress 15's – A 6-foot-4 long, lanky wing prospect, Harden helped the Atlanta Xpress reach the 15's championship. Harden showed a good mid-range pull-up, solid athleticism and a good skill level from the wing position. Harden appears to be the next in line for Xpress, who has a number of high major prospects on their 17's team.
TyShon Alexander, SG, Team Charlotte 17's – For the second day in a row, Alexander consistently made jump shots. He's confident in his long-range shot and made four three-pointers in a loss to Atlanta Xpress 17's in the semi-finals. Not many freshman are able to make an impact at the 17's level, but Alexander is a major contributor for Team Charlotte and doesn't back down from competition.
M.J. Walker, SG, Atlanta Xpress 17's – I haven't seen many guards in the 2017 class better than Walker, a 6-foot-4, 185-pound wing. Playing up in the 17's division, Walker is effective and tough perimeter threat to stop. In fact, he's the Xpress' best perimeter option and helped them reach the championship game. Walker is a strong, physical driver that finishes well at the rim. But he's also a good shooter to the three-point stripe and is a capable shot maker from mid-range.
Lavar Batts, who averaged 18 points a game as a freshman at Concord (N.C.) Jay M Robinson, already has interest from Wake Forest, Clemson, Charlotte, Loyola and Radford.