BEL AIR, Md. -- The other half of Gilman's (Baltimore, Md.) talented sophomore backcourt tandem is 5-foot-11 point guard Donald Duncan, who Terrapin Times also got the chance to evaluate in a 72-49 loss Jan. 12 at John Carroll in Bel Air. He and Tyler Foster, the 6-5 combo guard, comprise a promising young backcourt for the Greyhounds as they begin to make more of a name for themselves in local basketball with a young talent infusion.
Duncan, who came off the bench as the first guard reserve in this contest, is a fast, quicksilver type who we saw make a steal at the foul line and race past the entire JC team to get to the cup at the other end in a near heartbeat. Athletic and quick and with a solid frame and body control, we also liked how Duncan drained two of three three-point attempts in the game, the only field goals he would make in a rough night all-around offensively for Gilman, which struggled to get clean looks against JC's length and zone defense. Duncan showed good form and release/rotation on both his successful treys, which were all net.
Duncan would hit 2-of-7 field goals, including the 2-of-3 treys, while he did not get to the free throw line. On his near coast-to-coast take, his shot was altered at the end of the play by 6-9 Mike Tertsea, but he showed quicks and explosion getting his hands on the ball and down the floor in a blur. He also seemed to anticipate well and move his feet at the defensive end, but at times all the Gilman guards left too many three-point shooters (see Kimbal MacKenzie's 5 made treys) open for uncontested looks, which got Gilman in the hole early.
Otherwise, Duncan's three-point bomb from the right wing with :15 left in the first half would get a big JC lead down to 34-21 heading into intermission, while he added a late one from the top of the key. But by then the game was out of reach, as Gilman could not probe the zone enough to find openings, or hit enough jumpers outside. Leading scorer Kai Locksley (9 points) missed all four three-point attempts on a night he was knocked around inside but still managed 7 boards.
Duncan is a set-up man who can shoot, but on this night not much went right for the Gilman offense trying to get into their sets against the pesky JC zone. They couldn't get any inside looks/post-ups against JC's two 6-9 frontcourt men, while JC's upperclass, perimeter guarding wings were too strong and physical for them to get much going outside either. Duncan had two steals and one assist on the night, a night Gilman had few assisted buckets and little flow.
A few times Duncan got into the lane below the JC zone, but failed to come up with assists with JC's long defenders getting their arms in the passing lanes and disrupting things. As with Foster, who struggled throughout at the offensive end, it was a difficult game to truly gauge either player's full game, given the lopsided nature of the contest and the lack of much offense displayed.
In the two team's first meeting this season, Gilman only lost by a handful. But this was lopsided from the start. Duncan showed good athleticism and "feel" for the game despite this challenging night, when nothing seemingly went right for Gilman.
The Terps have seen Duncan this season, as well as hosted him on campus for an unofficial visit. In addition to the locals, ACC schools have been through or in touch to monitor him as well, among others. Duncan will continue to be on the radar of HM's as his game continues to grow and refine over the next few years, and he's already on the Terps' early radar as "one to watch" in Charm City.
Duncan Another Charm City Soph to Watch
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