Steve Smith and Kevin Keatts have this date marked on their calendars well in advance. As far as we can tell, the Oak Hill-Hargrave scrimmage is the most well documented tussle of its kind in the pre-season.
While there was speculation in regards to the "official" score – the scoreboard had it 95-90 Hargrave combined – the sides traded victories in a series of 20-minute halves. Hargrave captured the first half 47-39 but Oak Hill rebounded in dramatic fashion to win the second 51-48.
With time winding down and the score tied at 48, Oak Hill's leader Brandon Jennings rose up and drained a 3-pointer over Eladio Espinosa for the win. The second half-winner was reminiscent of the trifecta Jennings hit to beat Team Breakdown to capture the Reebok Summer Championship.
Jennings' shot was the capper on an outstanding performance. Scout.com's 7th ranked prospect in the Class of 2008 hung 45 points on Hargrave. Mix in 8 assists, 5 rebounds and 3 steals and you've got a pretty tantalizing line for the evening. Jennings' performance was the ultimate rebound effort from his opening scrimmage against the Patterson School.
While Jennings was the headliner of a two-man wrecking crew, Hargrave went about it business in a different fashion. "We got contributions from a lot of guys," coach Kevin Keatts said. "All of our guys made plays."
Guard Dee Bost led the way with 23 points. His first half reads on offense were outstanding and his mini exchanges with Jennings were strong and entertaining. Mississippi State, which had an assistant in the house, has itself a player. Ironically, this wasn't the first time Bost saw a Jennings' jumper go down against his team. Last year Oak Hill needed Jennings' heroics to beat Bost's high school team, Concord.
Eladio Espinosa, PF, Hargrave – A strong fall surge opened up the South Florida option to him and now he's playing the kind of ball that will help the Bulls. His energy off the bench was key in the win. He had 4 dunks that would have made anyone's high light reel. However, most important was his tenacity on the boards.
Damier Pitts, PG, Hargrave – The Marshall pledge defended his tail off against Jennings in the first half and "held" him to 18. His run of 3s in the second helped Hargrave narrow the deficit.
Eshaunte Jones, SG, Hargrave – He was disappointed with himself for not getting it going consistently. When Hargrave needed a hoop it was his deep jumper and conversation at the line that tied the score deep in the second.
Roscoe Davis, PF, Hargrave – Strong in the first half as he scored 7 points; had some difficulties finishing but got on the offensive glass.
Right now he's a face-up power forward cast in a small forward's body. His development over the next year will be interesting to chronicle because the physical abilities are there. What direction his frame and size bear out may answer the question as to which position he sees the most time at collegiately.
Oregon State sent an assistant to check up on Eshaunte Jones. We spotted assistants from Indiana, Florida, Coastal Carolina, Virginia, Mississippi State and Liberty. … If you don't count Bryant's 11 points and only looked at the true bigs, Hargrave's insiders outscored Oak Hill 24-6 in the first half. … Pe'Shon Howard, making his Oak Hill debut, left an impression as a willing passer with vision. …