HYATTSVILLE, Md. -- The DeMatha (Hyattsville, Md.) Stags, led by Markelle Fultz with 18 points and 10 rebounds, had no problem disposing of Gonzaga (Washington, D.C.), 69-54, on June 25 as the DeMatha Summer League reaches its final stages.
Despite playing without junior D.J. Harvey, who was attending the LeBron James Camp, DeMatha overcame some early sloppiness to turn a close game into a decisive lead at the half, 47-30. Chris Lykes, who led Gonzaga with 21 points, had a very good night shooting the ball and kept the Eagles in the game early.
Also, his defense forced turnovers and kept DeMatha's transition game in check early on. But with the Stags being 20 players deep, they were able to substitute freely and eventually wear down the Eagles before half, and throughout the second half.
Fultz began the game like a man on a mission. Consistently driving the lane and scoring at will in every way possible, it seemed he could not be stopped and was headed for a high-scoring performance. However, following a lengthy timeout, Gonzaga decided to double-team Fultz and force him to rely on his teammates for success.
Step in the June 25 star, Kellon Taylor. Performing a true D.J. Harvey imitation, Taylor felt very comfortable stepping into the '3' roll while demonstrating his exceptional athletic skills. Had a fan walked in during the first half, he would have had a hard time distinguishing them.
Their games are similar in style, but Harvey is still well ahead as a finished product. As the game progressed in the second half, Taylor was visibly tired and ran out of steam, as evident by several missed free throws and open jumpers normally well within his range. Most of his stats came in the first half as he finished with 13 points, 6 rebounds, 3 assists and two blocks, and still had a productive night.
DeMatha's defense, led by Taylor and Fultz, can not be ignored. With their quickness and court awareness, they shut down three of the expected high-risers in the area, Eddie Scott, Prentiss Hubb and Myles Dread. None of these athletes made double figures, and all seemed hesitant to create off the trouble, over-passing much of the time.
It wasn't until the game was in hand that Dread and Scott tried to make something happen by attacking the rim, drawing fouls and getting to the line. However the effort was much too late.
Ryan Allen also had a good floor game, scoring 10 points and keeping everyone involved in the offensive flow. Alternately, on the defensive end, Allen had trouble with Lykes' speed, quickness and dribble penetration. But who hasn't had the same problem with Lykes? However, his assist level was down due to DeMatha's defensive structure, and their great ability to cut off passing lanes.
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