Strong KY Showing at Blue Chip Shootout

Bellarmine University hosted the Blue Chip Shootout Friday night. Ten teams, five games, eight hours of non-stop action with some top talent representing and showing off their abilities. Brandan Wright of Brentwood, TN, Eric Devendorf, Kevin Durant, and Jamont Gordon of Oak Hill, VA all showcased their talents.

There was plenty of talent to see Friday night on the campus of Bellarmine University in Louisville. Seven Commonwealth High Schools participated in the five-game event.

Clay(Portsmouth,OH) vs. Lou. Holy Cross

The first game of the day was highlighted by the outstanding play of two talented kids: Cam Thoroughman of Clay and Aaron Troutman of Holy Cross. Thoroughman looked like a thoroughbred racing up and down the court and leading his team to an early lead, scoring 27 points and collecting 11 rebounds, proving he might be better than his Top 250 ranking. The 6'7 210 pound guard looked in control and very smooth on the court, scoring in a variety of ways.

The 6'3 180 pound Troutman would not be outdone however, while the rest of his team struggled from the field, he was scoring from all over the court, including a few three-pointers from international range. Troutman finished the game with 23 points, including 4-11 from downtown. Holy Cross beat the team from the north, 43-39.

West Jessamine(Nicholasville, KY) vs. Lou. Western

The second game of the day matched two teams that seemed to mimic each other in the way they play. I can think of three adjectives to describe both of these squads: erratic, hectic, and fast.

Western was led in scoring by 6'0 185 pound guard Andre Barnes with 23 points. Western had a considerable height advantage with 6'9 205 pound Daius Pegues and 6'4 195 pound forward Kendell Holley, but due to the frenetic pace of the game, the two big men were ineffective down low.

West Jessamine was led by 6'1 185 pound guard Trevor gray, whose stellar play and quick hands kept his team in the ball game. With only a minute left to play, 5'11 160 pound point guard Michael Spann decided to heat up. Spann hit two threes and a very quick drive to the basket for a layup, putting West Jessamine up four late. Western could not overcome the deficit and fell 60-56. The outstanding play of a few players was marred throughout the game as the teams combined for 44 turnovers.

Scott County(Georgetown, KY) vs. Warren Central(Bowling Green, KY)

The defending State Champion Warren Central faced a tough Scott County opponent and were undersized due to the loss of its graduates. Scott County is led by 7'2 240 pound Center Jared Carter. Carter hosted a block party in the gymnasium, swatting 10 shots and leading his team to a lop-sided 90-59 victory. Carter poured in 15 points and collected eight boards as well, just dominating Warren Central.

Warren Central was led by Nick Britt, who scored 12 points while grabbing seven rebounds.

A couple of players to mention for Scott County are Matt Walls and Anthony Coote. The two combined for 40 points, 13 boards, and nine assists.

Brentwood Academy(Brentwood,TN) vs. Lou. Jeffersontown

Brentwood Academy is led by 6'9 200 pound junior Forward Brandan Wright. Wright, ranked #3 by, showed why he is a prime target for a number of schools, including Louisville, Kentucky, Duke, and North Carolina. The superstar scored 22 points, grabbed 17 boards, and blocked six shots, but his sqaud was just outplayed by Jeffersontown.

J'Town forced 29 turnovers, completely disrupting Brentwood's gameplan of getting the ball to its star. 6'0 senior Guard Dominic Tilford led the way with 21 points and did his best Allen Iverson impression, scoring every way possible. Tilford's teammate Corey Clark, played outstanding basketball going 7-11 from the floor and scoring 22 points. Clark, a 6'2 Forward, helped his team out with eight rebounds, six of those on the offensive side of the ball, giving his team many second chances. Jeffersontown sent the nationally ranked Brentwood packing, 68-59.

Oak Hill Academy(Mouth of Wilson, VA) vs. Lou. Manual

We all know the name. We all know the reputation. Oak Hill lived up to both against an undermatched Manual squad. Manual did the best they could to play keep-away from Oak Hill, moving the ball on offense efficiently. However, the few mistakes Manual made, the talented Oak Hill sqaud took advantage of. Manual simply got bullied in this contest, but did show signs of brilliance. The most brilliant part was the play of 6'1 Forward, Justin Royles. Royles seemed unimpressed by the Oak Hill defense scoring all 12 of his points in the paint.

With Oak Hill you have to pick your poison and apparently Manual decided to pass on that option as both Jamont Gordon and Kevin Durant did whatever they pleased. Gordon led the way with 18 points, while Durant added 16. The Oak Hill offense moved with precision and is deadly in the half-court set. Friday night, its transition game was even better. The star athletes fill more lanes than a Friday night bowling league. Syracuse signee Eric Devendorf was plagued by foul trouble the entire game, but with just moments left, showed why he is so heralded. Devendorf sliced through the lane, spinning like a top, and with the ball on a string, crossed the eyes of every spectator before dropping a beautiful dime to Bamba Fall for a last second jam. Oak Hill defeats Manual, 69-43.

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