OVERLAND PARK – A number of players from Topeka participated in three prestigious summer basketball tournaments over the weekend.
The Kansas All-Stars 15U team, which is mostly comprised of sophomore Topeka players, won the gold championship at the Sunflower Showcase held in Lawrence. They defeated the Champaign Wolverines 75-69 in overtime to win the title.
KC Run GMC 15U, featuring Hayden sophomore Jett Canfield, also took home the crown at the Jayhawk Summer Finale in Overland Park. Canfield battled through a knee injury in the final two games to finish with 15 points in the semifinal win over Mo Williams Academy and nine in the championship game win over SYF Players.
The Kansas All-Stars 15U team consisted of sophomores DeShawn Hanika, Will White, Jerry Evans, Koriyon Carr, Ra’Zhon Harness, and Kenny Stewart and freshman Jacqez Barksdale. White scored 24 points in the championship game while Hanika led the way throughout the tournament, but was unable to play in Sunday’s finale.
The Kansas All-Stars 17U went 3-0 in pool play at the Sunflower Showcase before losing in the closing seconds in the first game of bracket play. The team was led by point senior point guard Malik Keith, who opened the tournament with a 14-point, 8-assist performance.
Fellow seniors Harold Emanuel, Ahmad Winston, Dante Kahre, and Ahmad Fox; junior Poncho Freeman, and sophomores Hanika and White were also on the team in addition to recent graduate Daniel Kingcannon.
STRONG SHOWING BY SSA ELITE
The SSA Elite 16U team went 3-1 at the KC Hardwood Classic, also played in Overland Park, with their only loss being a one-point defeat to Kingdom Hoop Elite.
Shawnee Heights junior point guard Trey Brown led the team in scoring averaging 19.8 points a game, which included a 32-point performance against KC Premiere Black. Brown also averaged 3.0 rebounds and 3.0 assists a game.
Brown drilled a go-ahead 3-pointer with 45 seconds left to lift the team to a win over MN Phenom and Washburn Rural junior point guard Brayden White (pictured) added to the heroics by sinking a free throw as time expired for the win over the STL Prospects. White averaged 7.0 points, 6.3 assists, 1.5 rebounds, and 1.5 steals a game.
Shawnee Heights junior shooting guard Michael Brooks had two 19-point games and averaged 14.3 points a game for the tournament. He also averaged 7.3 rebounds.
Washburn Rural junior small forward Jenner Hickel also averaged 14.3 points a game, which included scoring 40 points in the final two games.
CLASS OF 2019 ON DISPLAY
Topeka has an influx of talent coming in led by 6-foot-3 combo guard Zach Harvey and 6-foot shooting guard Levi Braun, both of whom are headed to Hayden.
Harvey has received plenty of praise throughout the summer for a number of standout performances. Northwestern is highly interested in Harvey and watched him again at the Jayhawk Summer Finale while playing for PowerGroup. Harvey had 20 points and six rebounds in the tournament opener and knocked down two 3-pointers in the final three minutes to lift the team to a come-from-behind win with Northwestern assistant Patrick Baldwin watching.
Braun, who averaged 25 points a game last week at the GASO in Texas, had another solid showing at the KC Hardwood Classic. He dropped 16 against an athletic Team Penny team showing his shooting and scoring ability.
Washburn Rural guard Jordan White stayed busy playing for PowerGroup and SSA Elite. White is a very active all-around player who plays with energy and makes things happen on both ends.
Point guard Jacqez Barksdale will he headed to Highland Park this fall and was a key contributor off the bench playing up for the Kansas All-Stars 15U team.
Seaman forward Trey Duffey, son of former Washburn standout Shelley Duffey (Foster), also showed flashes while playing for SSA Elite.
Washburn Rural point guard Chris Glenn led the way for the Kansas Hoggs, who battled through injuries and illness to finish 2-3 at the Sunflower Showcase.