Future Friars Shine In IS8 Playoffs

QUEENS, N.Y. – The IS8 spring season playoffs had heavy Friar focus this past weekend, especially on Saturday in the Real Scout-Starrett City match-up. Instead of visiting campus over the weekend, Saiquon Stone hit a shot as time expired that almost eliminated Weyinmi Efejuku and Geoff McDermott from playing on Sunday.

Stone dribbled up the floor past the Real Scout defense and pulled up at the three-point line for a chance to send the game into overtime. The shot banked in, but Stone was left walking off the court with his jersey over his face as the referee ruled his foot was on the line.

The Xaverian H.S. (Brooklyn, N.Y.) senior guard cooled down after the game before answering some questions about his recruitment, and he said that he was playing at IS8 this weekend because Providence cancelled his visit. The reason being was that he had not yet received his ACT score, which he thought he would have in time for the visit. Stone said that he expects it to come any day now this week, and that he hopes to get out to Providence as soon as possible to visit. And if he doesn't get a qualifying score, which would then lead him to prep school, Stone said that he would remain loyal to those three schools on his list. PC, Marist and Fairfield are who he is considering, he has not visited either, and does not have a leader.

Efejuku and McDermott will however be on campus this summer and said they will both head out in June.

As far as what the two recruits are thinking right now as they look ahead to their futures at Providence, Efejuku said he wants the team to get back to the tournament and McDermott says he is happy he has the opportunity to go to school for free, and that he is going to work hard to get his spot on the team.

What spot on the team Efejuku will play has been a question as of late. Despite playing point guard all this past year at Brewster Academy (N.H.), Efejuku playing the point was thought by some to not be a definite, especially with the recent signing of Sharaud Curry.

"They said I'll be playing the one, but I can do both. People have said I can't shoot, but it's that I just don't because I don't have to," Efejuku said. "I had a couple of 30 point games this year. I can shoot the ball. I know about Sharaud Curry signing, and if he can play then that's fine, it will only help us."

Saturday's Second Round Real Scout – 96 Starrett City – 95

The high scoring first half was highlighted by the frontrunner for IS8 spring MVP Will Harris. The 6-5 scorer was six-of-seven from three in the first half. He opened up knocking down his first three open looks from behind the arc, two being from NBA range and put Real Scout up 54-49 at the break.

Harris has received interest from Providence after deciding not to attend Nebraska next season. He will prep again next year although reports saying he will attend Brewster are not definite yet. Harris said he is completely open right now in his process, doesn't plan on signing until the spring period of 2006, and wants to stay closer than the Midwest to his New York home.

Efejuku brought his teammate from Brewster for this game, Louisville committed Chad Millard. The two connected a couple of times in the first half but aside from the few times that Efejuku showed his explosivesness, he did a lot of distributing and running the offense. A dunk in the open floor and a runner in the lane was about it for Efejuku's day scoring.

McDermott was quiet early but stepped up in the second half and hit the boards hard. He grabbed down many off missed free throws and traded passes with Harris for his points inside. Although there was one time that he got caught boxing out the invisible man and had 6-3 guard Thomas Manzano (Genesis One Prep, Miss.) throw down a put-back dunk on him, McDermott had a good showing with 15 points and 11 rebounds and was in total control with the ball in his hands.

Stone had a strong second half en route to scoring 16 points and raised the intensity level of his team. He took the task of defending Efejuku full court, got his hands on a lot of passes when Starrett went to zone, and went from the baseline to the rim with the dribble several times for scores.

Harris had 36 points and Herbie Allen, headed to Fairfield, had 19 points for Real Scout. Starrett got 34 points from Manzano and 25 points from Ruben Guillendeux of St. Patrick's (N.J.).

Sunday's Quarterfinal Real Scout – 75 Playaz – 57

McDermott did it all this game. There was no official numbers outside of him scoring 16 points, but he had roughly 11-13 rebounds, 6-8 blocks and 6-8 assists.

The Playaz were without junior standouts from Episcopal Academy (PA) Wayne Ellington and Gerald Henderson, who had their junior prom the night before, highly rated ‘07 swingman Corey Stokes, and '06 point guard Luis Guzman. But they did still have a dangerous backcourt to contend with as 6-9 point guard Earl Clark and three-point specialist Jawan Carter suited up.

McDermott engineered the Real Scout run in the second half. They started slow with Harris missing most of his open looks in the first half, Efejuku turning it over and getting into foul trouble, and Allen never getting any touches. Millard was also a one-game show and not playing on Sunday.

But McDermott was doing it all this game and his interior passing was on full display. Real Scout went ahead for good 38-35 as McDermott went through two defenders inside and scored, hit Harris consecutively when the defense came on help, and came over from the weak side for a couple blocks.

As IS8 coordinator Pete Edwards pointed out on the microphone, McDermott's football skills were still there as he threw an outlet pass to Allen. Many thought at first that the pass was to nobody and looked like a turnover, but the pass was actually thrown ahead of Allen intentionally by McDermott – like a slant in football. Allen's defender wasn't watching McDermott, which allowed Allen to race past him and then up the floor as he caught the McDermott pass in stride.

Harris finished with another game-high of 30 points.

Real Scout plays the Panthers on Sunday in a highly anticipated semi-final. The Panthers beat Juice 98-74 in the quarters and feature a big time line-up of North Carolina recruit Danny Green and brother Rashad Green, '06 highly-ranked forwards Derrick Caracter and Curtis Kelly, St. John's committed guard Doug Wiggins and one of the top 8th graders in the country in Lance Stephenson.

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