Prep School Countdown: No. 3 Bridgton Academy

Robert Vaden was supposed to be at Pike (Ind.), but a last-minute decision took him to Bridgton Academy - and gave Whit Lesure a formidable club for this season.

We're unveiling the most extensive and only prep school poll of its kind and we'll take a look at Bridgton Academy (Maine.), which checks in at No. 3.

Whit Lesure may not have the luxury of having a versatile big man like Alexander Johnson this season, but now he's got someone even more versatile – just a few inches shorter.

Former Pike (Ind.) standout Robert Vaden, a smooth 6-5, 200-pound swingman who has signed with Indiana after withdrawing the commitment he made to Purdue prior to his first high school game, landed at Bridgton and will be Lesure's go-to guy.

``He's not only good by today's standards, but also is good by Bob Cousy's standards," Lesure said of Vaden. "He's a complete player who has the total package and is unselfish. He's as hard-working a kid as anyone we've got."

Bridgton will have a formidable front-line with well-traveled 6-10, 225-pound forward Maurice Shaw, an athletic big man who has bounced around at numerous schools in Arizona and Washington, and 6-90, 270-pound center Cassin Diggs, a mid-major prospect from Williamsport, Pa.

Rahshon Clark, a 6-6, 190-pound forward who put up monster numbers at Beach Channel (N.Y.), will likely see time at both forward spots. The Iowa State commit has been a relentless rebounder and inside player who is working on his perimeter skills.

California native Khalif Ford (6-1, 175), who is still getting back to 100 percent after suffering a knee injury, will run the show for Bridgton. He's quick and explosive, but just needs to work on making better decisions.

Croatian Ivan Stefanac (6-8, 240) will see plenty of time for Lesure's club. He's got nice touch for a player his size, but needs to work on his low-post moves. When Bridgton wants to go quick, you'll see 5-11, 175-pound guard Giordan Watson, who hails from Southfield, Mich., and is a solid, tough player.

Delaware-bound 6-5 swingman Sam McMahon, who is from Jefferson City, Mo, will give Bridgton a quality shooter and Bulgarian 6-4 wing Asen Marchey is another athletic shooter who will battle for minutes.

Other players who figure to contribute in reserve roles include Mike Davis Jr. (6-4), the son of the Indiana head coach, wings Robert Nimocks (6-6), Evan Harruff (6-4) and Jay Hight (6-3) and former Brookline High (Mass.) 5-10 point guard Tim Jones.

``This is a good group that has had a terrific fall and they seem to have good chemistry and play well together," added Lesure. "I'm optimistic, but not too optimistic. I think we've got some good players, but it'll be interesting."

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