Oak Hill/Hargrave Scrimmage

DUBLIN, Va. - Two powerhouses locked up Thursday night in a pre-season contest. Hargrave Military Academy, powered by a high-major backcourt, scored the win. IU-bound Maurice Creek led the way with 22 points.

Two very good friends renewed a rite of passage on the pre-season basketball landscape Thursday night. Oak Hill's Steve Smith and Hargrave's Kevin Keatts brought their teams to a neutral floor for a fast-paced scrimmage game.

The game culminates a year's worth of woofing between the friends and typically affords some of the country's top recruits a chance to stretch their legs and measure themselves for the up coming season.

Unfortunately for Oak Hill, Hargrave's crew was in mid-season form for the pre-season exhibition. The old buddies prefer to play a pair of 20-minutes halves and clear the scoreboard. Regardless of the methodology, the outcome remained the same: Hargrave scored a knockout.

Keatts' team won the first half 53-37 and hung on for a 10-point 46-36 victory in the second. Tally them up and it was Hargrave the 99-73 victors.

Hargrave won this game on the perimeter where its two top threats dominated. Indiana-bound guard Maurice Creek pumped in 22 points (18 in the first half) and Massachusetts winger Freddie Riley accounted for 20.

If you felt going into the game Creek would be the top guard on the floor, you would feel vindicated. He needed little space to click off his jumper and seemed to have the best night defensively. The Hoosiers can count on him for production.

Riley is a bombardier. His four 3-pointers, many of them deep, are a preview of what A-10 fans can expect out of tenure with the Minutemen. Confident and for good reason, Riley is a wing weapon.

While Riley and Creek were having their way, Oak Hill's backcourt never settled in. The Warriors turned it over, took bad shots and had few answers at either end. Doron Lamb, the school's big time junior, was suspended for the game. The move put the point guard duties in the hands of Lamont Jones and Pe'Shon Howard, neither of which was effective in getting the offense settled in.

Gallon Had 32
There was, however, one staple in the Oak Hill playbook that couldn't be stopped. Keith Gallon was a B-E-A-S-T. How about 32 points and 14 rebounds! Not too shabby against a frontline consisting of guys heading to Charlotte and Florida.

Gallon has trimmed off 20 pounds and tightened up his approach to hoops and academics since arriving on campus. His diligence and work showed. Though most of his offense was self-generated, if he caught it in the paint he knew what to do. Low entry passes resulted in pin downs and bullish hoops.

Gallon will visit Mississippi State this weekend. Oklahoma remains a player with California also giving it a shot. … Virginia Tech's Seth Greenberg watched Jones and the New Yorker will visit the Hokies on Saturday. … Virginia Tech, Penn State, Charlotte, Providence, Southern Miss and Oakland were in the building. …

Painter's offensive game is coming. He had the double-double with 12 and 10 boards. His night could have been significantly stronger if he'd been able to finish around the rim. The next step is becoming ball strong inside. … Both Painter and Braswell had trouble with Gallon's sheer size. In typical Braswell fashion, he fought hard offensively and crafted his way to hoops underneath the rim. …

A natural scorer, Oak Hill is going to need Jones to expand his game at the point. To do so he'll have to slow it down and take his time and let things develop around him. … Ledrick Eackles put together a strong game. He tried a tip dunk in traffic and generally turned himself into a playmaker at both end. He should be a valued mid-level target at this point. … Bryant, a mid-level prospect, thrives as a rebounder and shot blocker because of his long arms and natural athletic ability. …

George Mason couldn't have added a more solid forward than Luke Hancock. He'll find his way on the floor in some capacity early. … Baya Moussa Keita is headed in the right direction. The 6-foot-10 2010 Syracuse commitment is long, runs the floor and has a body that will be able to handle weight. He won't a big offensive player as his game will be rebounding, running and rejecting. …

Austin Alecxih visited Bucknell and Colgate and Quinnipiac like him. …


HARGRAVE – Freddie Riley 20, Maurice Creek 22, Adrien Lucienne 2, Evan Gordon 11, Ledrick Eackles 12, Luke Hancock 5, Deshawn Painter 12, Lee Martin 4, Chris Braswell 10, Alex Newsome 2.

OAK HILL – Austin Alecxih 3, Jordan Gallagher 2, Glenn Bryant 9, Pe'Shon Howard 4, Bryon Allen 4, Keith Gallon 32, Lamont Jones 15, Baya Moussa Keita 4.

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