For years, the St. Louis Shootout has stood as a must see event on the prep holiday hoops tournament/shootout schedule. Now in it’s 26th year, the Shootout has slipped a little in terms of overall talent due to the lack of a corporate sponsor and the amount of events that are popping up around the country. Still, as far as the Road Show is concerned it will be a must see event for as long as it is in existence.
STL SHOOTOUT NOTABLES
Tyler Griffey - Only a sophomore, the 6-8 BF has already attracted the attention of several high major programs including Kansas where he took an unofficial visit for Late Night. He’s a skilled kid with long arms, soft touch and a pretty good feel around the basket. He’s lacking a bit of bulk right now but he appears to be in the middle of a growth spurt. His footwork is above average for a young big man and he does a great job of sealing off his man to create easy angles for teammates to pass him the ball in scoring position. He saw consistent double teams in a zone that played him front and back but still managed to get 20 points and seven boards while going 7-13 from the field and 6-7 from the free throw line.
Mike Tisdale - Because he lacks strength and desperately needs to add bulk, it will be tough for the very skilled near seven footer to make an immediate impact at Illinois, but he’s going to end up a pretty good player in college. He runs well, has a deft shooting touch to 18 feet, is a patient shot blocker and most importantly he plays with some fire in his belly. Judging by how much ground he has to cover in order to catch his teammates often errant passes -- from as close as six feet away -- he’d probably make a hell of a goalie on the soccer field. The opposing DeSoto (MO) High team’s fans tried to hate on him with the tired “overrated” chant and each time they did it he silenced them with a big block or a swishing J. 29 points, 14 boards and eight rebounds for the afternoon.
Torres Roundtree - A well built 6-4 junior guard, Roundtree wears many hats for Florissant (MO) McCluer North. He’ll play the point half the time, he’ll post up and he plays some terrific defense. He had a whopping nine steals on the day and most of them came from his keen ability to read passing lanes and sense for when to sneak up from behind as a ball hawking help side defender. A tough driver and good rebounder, his jumper still needs more work but he’s got a chance to be a high major player.
Jerai Grant - Clemson looks to have gotten a good one in the long and suddenly stronger and more athletic Grant. A 6-8 BF, Grant is dangerous on the pick and roll, crashes the offensive glass and plays hard on both ends. He went for 19 points, 18 boards and three blocks and was nearly the hero in his Hyattsville (MD) DeMatha team’s overtime loss against Decatur (IL) Christian when he got a tough one handed tip jam off of a missed shot to take a one point lead with around 20 seconds to go. Unfortunately, the guy we are going to touch on next did him one better.
Beas Hamga - Iowa is looking good for landing an early commitment from the 6-11 C/BF. He’s got seemingly impossibly long arms and he runs pretty well despite knees that knock together when he’s at a standstill. When he first spins and lets loose with his awkward looking short jumpers and hook shots you wonder what he’s doing, but when they keep going in you can’t argue. He needs to add more strength and smaller, quicker guys give him some trouble defensively but he’s a potential top 35 type player nationally in the class of 2008. The most important two of 22 points came with about 10 seconds left when he answered Grant’s overtime tip jam with a two handed tip jam of his own to give Decatur back a one point lead with about 10 seconds to go. Hamga also added 11 rebounds, five blocks and didn’t turn the ball over a single time.
Lucca Staiger - The shots weren’t falling for the well built German import, but the 6-5 WG/WF still impressed those in attendance. He’s got a college ready frame, handles the ball extremely well – especially with a deadly right to left crossover – and he’s an absolutely fantastic passer. He’s not bad defensively either and makes those around him better. Even though his shots didn’t drop on Thursday, it isn’t a concern because his jumper is textbook with plenty of lift off the floor, a high release point, plenty of arch and lots of ball rotation. He’ll challenge for top 100 honors in the class of 2007.
MORE NOTES FROM THE SHOOTOUT
He’ll play baseball at Nebraska, but 6-6 combo forward Dave Stewart from Kirkwood (MO) Vianney could have been a division one hooper if he wanted to. He’s tough off the dribble and simply finds ways to score. He’ll be a beast in the Nebraska intramural leagues. … Florissant (MO) McCluer South’s roster is pretty much made up of midgets save for junior Abel Tillman. Although he’s extremely raw offensively, the 6-7 BF is going to get some looks because of his borderline insane run and jump ability. The Road Show has seen this story play out before and he’s the kind of kid who is going to go to Vegas and have a couple of monster dunks and big blocked shots in some auxiliary gym and the next thing you know he’ll have mid major offers from all over. …The Road Show has heard a lot of silly cheers during it’s time covering high school games, but Wildwood (MO) Lafayette may have come up with the worst. As Lafayette lost to Vianney all the student section could come up with was a weak “Let’s play soccer” chant. Seriously, let’s play soccer? How weak is that? …Saint Louis University coach Brad Soderberg’s son Kramer is a scoring machine. A 5-10 WG/PG, the junior is very quick with the ball and he’s got the permanent green light. His St. Charles (MO) West squad needed every one of his 30 points during a closer than it should have been win over San Diego (CA) Hoover. …Florissant (MO) McCluer North has two other division one prospects in it’s junior class in addition to Roundtree. Anthony Booker is a long and tough 6-7 BF who has significant upside and 6-3 WG Femi John is a tough and physical defender who scores with athleticism. …
Schools in attendance- Western Kentucky, Xavier, Missouri, Saint Louis University, Iowa State and Northwestern. Illinois head man Bruce Weber was said to be in attendance but he was not spotted by the Road Show.
- Total teams seen- 59
- Total games watched- 37
- Total miles traveled- 3,367
Up next- Circle City Challenge, Indianapolis, IN, Saturday.