Georgia Stars 88, Boo Williams 68 Memphis YOMCA 55, Mean Streets 54 (OT)
Memphis YOMCA vs. Georgia Stars
Louis Williams, SG, Georgia Stars: The case has been made and it's a strong one for Williams as the No. 1 player in America. In two games on Friday, Williams cranked his game up to a level where few in the Class of 2005 have gone and none have sustained consistently except him.
In two games, Williams went 21-for-27 from the field, 4-for-5 from downtown and made all seven of his free throws to go along with 8 assists. He dropped 33 on the Illinois Wolves and ended their unbeaten July run and then took out Boo Williams with 20 points in a game in which he went a near-perfect 9-for-10 from the field to go with 20 points.
The play of the summer came courtesy of Williams as well. "Sweet Lou" caught it on the wing, drove the middle of the lane and rose up for dunk. Vernon Macklin, the big time 6-foot-9 power forward for Boo Williams went up to block Louis' shot. Mistake. Williams kept climbing the ladder, met Macklin at the rim, rose up over Macklin and threw down a jam that no other 6-foot-1 guard in America is even capable of contemplating. For three solid minutes there was a kind of buzz in the gym that let you know something special just happened.
Jerel McNeal, SF, Mean Streets: First of all, no one in their right mind wants to play these guys and just when it looked like Memphis was going to pull away in the semis, Mean Streets rose up. Led by McNeal, this incredibly scrappy bunch scratched and clawed its way back into the game. Finally they made a 3 to send it into overtime but just couldn't make the sheer number of big time players Memphis threw its way. McNeal meanwhile, was posting up Pierre Niles and making buckets. He led the way with 17 of the hardest earned points you'll see on the circuit.
J.P. Prince, PG, Memphis: It's time to start talking about him in the same sentence with the best PGs in his class. Smooth, long bodied and poised he'll break presses, dish the rock and is slowly cranking up his level of play higher and higher with each game. He's in the process of gaining more confidence and its showing.
Alade Aminu, C, Georgia Stars: We've said it before and it bears repeating. This guy gets a little better each time out and he came to play on Friday. Defensively he's making an impact in almost every game and he's starting to make his baby hook with regularity.
Bobby Frasor, SG, Illinois Wolves: He emptied the tank against the Stars and his last second shot was just short. Still he finished with 20 points and made 6 of his 11 3-point attempts. Valiant effort against a big time crew.
Reginald Delk, SG, Mid-State Ballerz: Down at the Nationals he's been excellent each time we've seen him. He's taking – and making – all the tough shots for the Ballerz and his 3s are going down. He's in the Top 100 and he's not giving up his spot.
Dominic James, PG, Spiece: His team was probably the least talented still around deep in the Friday's playoffs and there's a reason. This little guy is quicker and tougher than most of the guards in this event. He competes, has an extra gear and winning is that important to him. He took his team as far as they could go in the playoffs before losing to YOMCA in the quarters.
Vernon Macklin, PF, Boo Williams: He was on the wrong end of Williams' dunk but shouldn't diminish the kind of tournament and semifinal game that he had here. In the semis, when Boo was getting run out of the gym, Macklin single-handedly tried to answer the call. When the dust settled on a 20-point loss, Macklin had done what he could. He finished with 25 points, 8 offensive rebounds and 11 total. He went 12-for-16 from the floor and without him Boo Williams would have lost by 50. He's taken his game and put it in a category in 2006 with the best in the business.
News & Notes
Lewis Clinch continues to be a big draw. In the morning he had head coaches from Wake Forest and Tennessee in the gym. Assistants from Kansas, Georgia Tech, Florida, North Carolina State, Georgia and Auburn were there too. Everyone wants to make the cut list which should happen relatively soon. …
Coaches in the gym watching strong floor leader Bryan Mullins of the Illinois Wolves: Ball State, Northern Illinois, Southern Illinois, Butler, Loyola-Chicago and UMass is chasing him hard. …
J.P. Prince drew head coaches from Tennessee and Memphis and assistants from Georgia Tech, Florida State, NC State and Auburn. … Tyler Smith was watched by Buzz Peterson of Tennessee and a Florida State assistant. Not sure if Kansas is going to move on him or not. …
Saturday concludes our daily coverage of summer events as the AAU Nationals puts a capper on a long month!