Lance Thomas Shines At Hoopfest

RICHMOND, Va. – Lance Thomas and Vernon Macklin responded with All-American type performances on the final day of the SlamFest. Meanwhile, a new sophomore emerges and Tyreke Evans hits for 48!

Lance Thomas, PF, St. Benedict's – Another guy we think belongs in the McDonald's game, Thomas made his statement by scoring 32 points to go with a SlamFest-high 21 rebounds in the overtime win. He hit a few mid-range jumpers, took a charge, dropped a dime on the break and shot 20 free throws! One of the hardest playing kids in his class, Thomas had 18 in the first half.

Vernon Macklin (right), PF, Hargrave – Before the Hargrave-American Christian game disintegrated into a track meet, Macklin made his presence felt. This might be the most explosive senior over 6-foot-8 in the class and his near freakish athleticism was on display as he ran the floor and finished with powerful, above the rim throwdowns. He should be a lock burger game participant and scored 28 points and 15 rebounds.

Eugene Harvey, PG, St. Benedict's – He shot just 8-for-20 from the field and had 6 turnovers. However, all was made right when he banked in a runner head-on in overtime as the buzzer sounded. Harvey's buzzer-beater was the most dramatic moment of the SlamFest and set off a big time celebration.

Stefan Welsh, SG, Hargrave – The first half had to be his tops of the year. Offensively he scored 22 points on 6-for-11 from downtown. He also paid attention to's No. 1 sophomore on defense and did his best to stay in front of Evans. He finished with 30 points. He was out there playing fast and hard.

Tony Lewis, SG, Blue Ridge – The team faced a stiff test in St. Benedict's after losing to Oak Hill the night before. Clearly outmanned and outsized by a super sized frontline, Lewis and Trey Mines went to work. Lewis scored his 27 points by attacking the rim. Mines shot 17 free throws and scored 27 points of his own.

Tyreke Evans (left), SG, American Christian – His young team has chosen the path of most resistance. American Christian's brutal schedule continues to be too much for a talented but extremely youthful group. Hargrave took all the air of out their sail early. To his credit, Evans began the game trying to run the team and took an early pulse for the situation. Minutes into the game, it was about to get out of hand and he knew something had to be done.

We exited the rout with 12 minutes left in the game and Evans had 28 points on 22 shots. A few phone calls on the ride home and we learned he finished with a SlamFest-high 48 points (which is impressive given the fact he's a sophomore battling post-graduates). Few underclassmen have the offensive talent he possesses and it showed on Saturday. He tends to fade slightly on his perimeter shot but his body allows him to get in the paint and create outstanding looks for himself.

Ed Davis, PF, Hanover – Having heard so much about him, the bar was set pretty high and upon seeing him its easy to see what the hype is about. Davis is an athletic 6-foot-8 lefty who will be a face-up four man. Foul trouble took him slightly out of his game but not before we saw exactly what we needed to see. 18 points, 10 rebounds and 6 blocks as he played through foul trouble. There's something about him and when you include the fact that his father played 12 seasons in the NBA all the signs are there for him to be an outstanding prospect. How good? Probably a national Top 25 guy in his class before too long. Like a lot of kids his age, strength is an issue but skill-wise he can do some things and make them look easy.

Samardo Samuels, PF/C, St. Benedict's – Coming off a strong Friday night performance, Samuels couldn't crank it up offensively and made just 1-of-7 shots. His 2 points will undoubtedly be his lowest output of the year but he stayed active and had 9 boards.

With no games this weekend, Dave Leitao used his time wisely. On Saturday he was back at the SlamFest and on a mission. UVa is actively pursuing Ed Davis and was front and center for his game.

Ed Davis' (right) list will increase quickly. Leitao and Virginia Tech's Seth Greenberg have seen him in person. VCU, Richmond and American are interested. Expect more heavy hitters to quickly become involved. …

Trey Mines has JMU interested and ECU has called. …

Tony Lewis has a basketball offer from UNC-Greensboro with William & Mary chasing him for football. UVa has also shown gridiron interest. …

Tyler Smith did not make the trip with Hargrave. He's back home in Tennessee tending to a "family emergency." ... Potomac senior guard Eric Hayes scored 13 points on 6-for-15 from the floor. Hayes wouldn't cop to it, but he was definitely under the weather and gutted it out on Saturday. ...

Head Coaches In Attendance – Dave Leitao, Virginia

Assistant Coaches In The Gym – Steve Seymour, Virginia

One person close to Samardo Samuels relayed a list of North Carolina, Duke, Virginia, Louisville, Connecticut, St. John's, Texas, Kansas, Villanova and Rutgers. …

After just a few minutes into the game, you can tell that Ed Davis has been coached. He boxes out hard and grabs rebounds at their apex. He values the ball once he corrals it and tries to keep his blocked shots alive. What' not too like? …

Armon Bassett was the catalyst of the Hargrave transition game. He scored 17 points and dropped 19 assists against American Christian.

Corey Stokes had a rough go of it in Richmond. In his final game of the SlamFest, Stokes shot 0-for-14, completely uncharacteristic of him. Ironically, he came into the SlamFest having played a handful of outstanding games so his rough two-day stretch was a surprise to the coaching staff. … David Cubillan is going to be the perfect compliment to Dominic James at Marquette. A capable shooter, Cubillan will be well-suited to provide back-up minutes and a presence at the point when James needs a breather. …

Benedictine will have a player every now and then and junior Daniel Heppert should be a D-I guy. The 6-foot-5 wing is a shooter who scored 12 in the loss. Should be a lower level prospect with a strong feel. … Vernon Macklin had problems at the line and is going through a stretch where his release is giving him issues. …

"Arizona really wanted him to sign early but I think the other three are in better shape."

  • St. Benedict's coach Dan Hurley on Lance Thomas' recruitment which includes the Wildcats, Rutgers, Duke and Florida


  • Hargrave def. American Christian
  • Landstown 68, Hanover 53
  • Collegiate 63. The Steward School 54
  • St. Benedict's 76, Blue Ridge School 74 (OT)
  • Potomac 57, Benedictine 49

  • Blue Devil Digest Top Stories