New England Playaz and Move Your Feet Advance to Providence Jam Fest 17U Finals

PROVIDENCE, RI- The New England Playaz and — will headline the biggest game of the Providence Jam Fest on Sunday evening at the Murray Center on the campus of Rhode Island College after the two AAU programs earned wins in the afternoon’s semifinals.

New England topped New Jersey Select Stars 60-40 while Move Your Feet used its speed to outlast Qc United, 60-57.

The Playaz controlled the game from the start, lifted by the play making abilities of point guard Aaron Calixte (Lee Academy/2014) and the inside presence of Jared Reuter (Tabor/Brewster/2015) and Kerem Kanter (Wilbraham & Monson/2013).

Against the zone defense, Reuter’s passing ability found Kanter near the basket on the high low.

“It fits so well, especially in a 2-3 zone,” Kanter said.

When it wasn’t Reuter, Kanter and new addition Marcel Pettway (Wilbraham & Monson/2015) dominating in the paint, it was Calixte hitting the gaps and finding open teammates.

“He stepped his game up a lot in Philly [Jam Fest] last weekend,” Kanter added. “He played well and earned himself a couple of scholarship offers.”

The Playaz held a double-digit lead at halftime over NJ Select, 27-17, and only added to that on the start of the second half, getting the lead up to as high as 20.

Kanter had a game-high 16 points and Reuter added 12.

The other semifinal was the classic matchup of Move Your Feet’s speed against Qc United’s size. Move Your Feet had the ball handlers and shooters to stretch out the long Qc United defense. Though, United’s length was still able to force turnovers and tough shots. Move Your Feet led by double-digits at one point in the first half, but United was able to cut the lead to two at halftime.

Mason Jones (Manchester Township/2014) was the catalyst again for Move Your Feet. He scored six straight points in a two-minute span to give his team at 55-52 lead. Towards the end of the game speed began to favor Move Your Feet, as they started taking their defenders off the dribble.

“That was the most important thing,” Jones said. “When you get by your defender, they have to play help D. That causes fluster for the rest of the defense.”

With under a minute to go, United cut the lead to 58-57. Bryan Rivers (Peddie/2014) hit a pair of free throws to put Move Your Feet up three. United had a look at the end, but came up short.

“Bryan hit those free throws to help seal it,” Jones said. “They had a good look at the end, but we played good enough defense.”

The final will tip at 4:30 P.M.

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