Bluegrass Showcase: Day Two Standouts

LEXINGTON, Ky. -- Two of the highest rated players playing in the Bluegrass Showcase performed up to their ranking on Saturday. Top five player Josh Jackson strung together a double-double, while Caleb Swanigan went for 39 points and 21 boards in a win. Who else stood out?

Curtis Jones, SG, Huntington Prep – After struggling a little from the field on Friday, Jones, a 6-foot-3 wiry combination guard, put together a solid outing against Faith Baptist Academy. Jones hit three three-pointers, connected on a floater, finished in transition and also added seven rebounds. While Jones plays on the ball for Huntington Prep, he was effective as a scorer and that was his mentality. He’s quick and handles the ball well. He finished with 21 points on 8-for-17 from the field.

Miles Bridges, PF/SF, Huntington Prep – For the second day in a row, Bridges, a 6-foot-6 forward, played a physical brand of basketball. He was aggressive, active on the glass and looked to rip the rim down every time he drove to the basket. Bridges is a very good rebounder and went especially hard to the offensive glass against Faith Baptist Academy, reeling in six on that end and 11 total. On offense, Bridges finished off plays around the rim, scored off put backs and connected on one three-pointer. He finished 8-for-11 from the field and scored 18 points in the win.

Caleb Swanigan, C, Homestead – From a numerical standpoint this was the best performance of the event, as Swanigan, a 6-foot-9, 250-pound big man, went for 39 points and 21 rebounds. Swanigan made it look easy in the double-digit win over White Station. He was his normal active self on the glass, but he finished around the rim much better on Saturday than he did the day before. Swanigan went 12-for-15 from the field and even stepped away from the rim and nailed a three. Swanigan has a strong set of hands, nice touch inside and is also a very good passer. He is a below the rim guy and that caused him problems on Friday, but Saturday he used his body better and played more physical in the paint.

Dennis Tunstall, PF, Life Center Academy – No player helped himself more at the Bluegrass Showcase than this 6-foot-6 forward. Tunstall stretched the floor with his jump shot. He shot the ball with confidence from both mid-range and three. On Saturday, Tunstall nailed three of six three-point attempts. He also made mid-range jump shots and finished off plays around the rim. Although he lacks strength, he’s a good athlete and he pursues the ball off the glass. He scored 20 points and grabbed five boards in a loss to Prime Prep.

Traci Carter, PG, Life Center Academy – One of the top available point guards in the 2015 class, Carter certainly showed promise at the Bluegrass Showcase. He told Scout that he’s not quite 100-percent, as he’s recovering from a knee injury this summer. With that said, Carter is quick, tough and a shot maker from three. He’s a good facilitator and I like his potential as a lead guard. He’s a good shooter from three and also showed he could make mid-range pull-ups. He’ll need to cut down on turnovers, but he’s only been cleared to play for a month. I think four to eight weeks from now, Carter will be much more impactful on the court.

Mark Vital, PF, Prime Prep – Vital may be undersized for a power forward at 6-foot-5, but he plays with terrific energy and utilizes his impressive athleticism in the paint. He was a nightmare for Life Center Academy to try and defend, as he attacked from the high post, finished plays around the rim and made his way to the free throw line 11 times. Vital is aggressive, tough, a very good leaper and is able to make a catch and shoot jump shot with time and space. Vital finished 8-for-11 from the field and scored 24 points. He was the game MVP in Prime Prep’s win on Saturday.

Josh Jackson, SF, Prolific Prep – Jackson, a 6-foot-6 wing, is a special kind of athlete. He’s not only a tremendous leaper, but he has terrific body control, impressive speed and very good lateral quickness. Jackson has the potential to be an elite perimeter defender and is a very good rebounder from the wing spot. He struggled here with his long-range shooting, but that’s the only area he had issues with here. Jackson has terrific vision and is a very good passer. He’s also a strong driver and an impressive finisher at the rim and in transition. He’s one of the elite prospects in all of high school basketball.

Algevon Eichelberger, PF/C, Prolific Prep – Eichelberger, a 6-foot-5 post prospect, played with impressive energy on Saturday against Arlington Country Day. Eichelberger is a very good area rebounder. He pursues the ball with two hands, likes to play physical and is strong with the ball once he gets it in his mitts. He’s a below the rim guy, but what he lacks in size and athleticism, he makes up for in effort. Eichelberger also finished off plays close to the rim and was 9-for-12 from the field. He finished with 20 points and nine rebounds.


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