Philadelphia Junior Elite Awards and First Team

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Hoop Group Skills was at Competitive Edge Saturday for the first stop on their  Spring Junior Elite tour. One of four clinics scheduled for this Spring, the Philadelphia Junior Elite was a strong way to start the Jr. Elite circuit. Below is our list of Award winners and our First Team All-Philly Junior Elite.

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Philly Junior Elite Award Winners

Kevin Boyle Floor General Award: Zahree Harrison

Don’t let his size fool you, Zahree Harrison is a big player on the court. The guard has a leadership mentality and takes that trait onto the hardwood. He’s a crafty and creative player who can take his man off the dribble and set teammates up for success with nice passes.

Shooting Star Award: Armani Lopez

We saw some solid shooters on Saturday, but no one topped Armani. Sometimes it’s difficult to determine a player’s strengths in two game sets, but this was not the case with Armani. He was a lethal from three, draining six of them in his games. You better get a hand up on him or he will make you pay.

He Got Handle Award: Azhar Lewis

Our youngest award winner, Azhar was fun to watch play. As a fifth grader, he has a handle well above his age. The guard is crafty with the ball and does a good job protecting it against defenders. He has a very high ceiling and shows a lot of potential as a basketball player.

Bob Hurley Toughness Award: Zach Rocco

Zach is the definition of toughness on the court, and is the type of player every coach wants on his team. He is willing to do whatever is needed to help his team win. He’s a high IQ player and plays very hard. He’s not afraid to get on the floor and dive for loose balls if it means helping his team win.

Hoop Group Skills Mr. Versatility Award: Sam Failey

Sam was one of the more impressive guards at the Philadelphia Junior Elite. The ninth grader gets awarded the Mr. Versatility Award because he did a little bit of everything in his game action Saturday. Offensively, he was a playmaker, showing the ability to get to the rim and make plays for others. On the other end he has great hands and can jump passing lanes and simply take the ball away from ball handlers.

First Team All-Philly Junior Elite

Tyree Pickron

Tyree may have been the most outstanding players at the Philadelphia Junior Elite. One of the veterans of the clinic, Tyree showed why he could be a big time player in the Philadelphia area for the next three years. He was deadly from outside, draining three after three with a smooth stroke.

Mikeal Jones

Mikeal made his presence known in Philadelphia on Saturday. The eighth grader has extraordinary size for his age and great skill inside. He has good footwork inside and rebounds hard. Mikeal was a member of the First Team All-Fall Junior Elite and made a strong case to repeat in the Spring. He was also a walking highlight reel, throwing down several dunks in his two games.

Donta’ Scott

Donta’ is another eighth grader with incredible size. He’s extremely long and can alter shots at the rim and rebound over others. What stood out most when watching Donta’ play was his ability to grab a rebound and run the fast break himself. He moves very well up and down the court; it’s not an easy task stopping him from scoring when he gets a head of steam.

Christian Ings

Christian joins Tyree Pickron in the backcourt of our First Team selection. Christian is a smart player at the guard position. He makes good decisions with the ball in his hands and rarely forces anything. A strength in Christian’s game right now is his ability to run the point and play the shooting guard spot. He’s a very dynamic combo guard.

Shamik Lofton

Shamik rounds out of First Team. Shamik displayed a great deal of athleticism Saturday. He’s quick, he’s active and he never stops hustling. The eighth grader has an endless motor on the court. He plays hard on both ends of the floor, and is a major factor on both ends thanks to his great athletic ability.

The next Junior Elite is the Metro Junior Elite, scheduled for this Saturday, March 7th at Hoop Group Headquarters.

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James Albano: @JN_Albano

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