Hoophall South: Top Unsigned Seniors
BY:Matt Reynolds

After a couple of days in Bentonville, Arkansas for Hoophall South, I leave impressed with several unsigned seniors that are deserving of opportunities at the next level. My thoughts:

 

Tobe Awaka | Cardinal Hayes | Forward

Standing 6-foot-8, Awaka has a powerful frame, solid feel for the game, and oh yeah… he’s a 4.3 GPA student. This kid does it all. He’s a relentless rebounder on both ends, using his length and ridiculous strength to clear out space. On offense, he’s an effective lob target and is improving his footwork in the post. He also flashed the ability to step out and his threes which opens up his game. He plays locked in defensively as well – almost always in the right position and reads and rotates well. Awaka is a legitimate shot-blocker on the interior and communicates greatly on that end. He has strong interest from multiple Division 1 and Ivy League schools.

 

Dorian Finister | GW Carver | Guard

At nearly 6-foot-5 with good length, Finister is a tough, versatile scorer. He posted 21 points (2-3 3PT) against Coronado, while also providing 9 rebounds, 3 assists, and 4 steals. He was truly impactful all over the floor. He has quick-trigger three off movement and is comfortable as a slasher and ball-handler as well. On defense, he’s disciplined and contests well at the rim with verticality. Finister is physically tough, versatile with his handles/scoring/facilitating, and a strong defender. Currently involved are: Texas A&M, Houston, Louisiana, Tulane, UTEP, and East Tennessee State – whoever lands him is getting a solid player on day 1.

 

Isaac Peralta | Coronado | Guard

Peralta may have been my favorite player of Day 2. The 6-foot-1 guard is as crafty a scorer as they come. Burst, handles, footwork, creativity, body control – you name it. Early against GW Carver, it was evident he’d be a problem and he ended with 13 points on 6-of-6 shooting. He’s also a competitive defender, especially on-ball with his lateral quickness and hands. Peralta is an intelligent player who always seems to be in the right place at the right time. I believe he’s fully capable of leading an offense at the Division-1 level. Has offers from New Mexico, Houston Baptist, and UCSB.

 

Tarique Foster | Cardinal Hayes | Wing

Foster impressed me right off the bat with his physical tools. He’s long and rangy, mobile, and has vertical pop and explosion. He can play above the rim at will and is a lob target in both transition and halfcourt. On defense, he is instinctual as a shot-blocker, often hunting the big play at the rim. Offensively, his versatility shined through with tough rebounding, live dribble passing, and pull-up jump shooting. He has a slight frame so he will need to add muscle at the college level, but his ball skills are impressive at his size. Foster is going to be a true, two-way threat wherever he chooses to play next year. Foster tells me that Rutgers, Oregon State, Pittsburgh, Quinnipiac, and St. Peters are heavily involved in his recruiting.

 

Dionjahe Thomas | Legacy | Wing

Thomas had an all-around strong performance and was a huge piece in the win against Dream City. 15 points, 12 rebounds, 1 assist, 1 steal, 1 block – but the stats don’t really do justice to how well he played. He was physical right off the bat, using his strong, powerful frame and great wingspan to affect the defensive end. The tough on and off-ball defense was a real tone-setter. Thomas can play above the rim in transition and has the versatility to provide offense both as a creator and in the paint. His versatility on both ends is special, and I’m intrigued to see where he ends up playing next year. He currently has offers from Sam Houston State, Texas State, New Orleans, Louisiana, Florida Atlantic, and McNeese State.

 

Willie Anderson | GW Carver | Guard 

At 6-foot-3, Anderson can do it all on the offensive end. Against a tough Coronado team, he posted 17 points on 7-of-10 shooting, finishing well around the rim and also connecting on two of his three attempts from deep. He’s smooth and confident with the ball in his hand and while he’s aggressive, it isn’t reckless. Does a good job of picking his spots. I also liked Anderson’s rebounding in this game, tough and physical with effort on both ends. He’s highly competitive and has a great motor in transition – will certainly be impactful in college. Has offers from Tallahassee CC and Loyola New Orleans.

 

Filip Sinobad | Chaminade | Forward

Sinobad led Chaminade in scoring vs Cardinal Hayes, posting 16 points (3-6 3PT) and 7 rebounds. He has a long, smooth release from deep and can connect on big shots both off the move and standstill. He’s a smart cutter who knows how to find space and attack the zone defense. Sinobad is comfortable playing both inside and out, but I’d love for him to initiate contact more often in the post. He has good size and a strong frame and needs to use it to his advantage more. He’s a skilled, finesse player who can provide offensive punch as both a scorer and interior passer. Should be a solid scoring option at the next level. Currently holds an offer from the University of Illinois-Springfield.

 

Riley Buccino | Bentonville West | Wing

Buccino was one of the best, tough shot-makers I saw in the event. At 6-foot-3, he has a strong frame and is comfortable taking shots off the dribble in both the midrange and from deep. He can pick, and get to, his spots for good looks by using tight handles, crafty footwork, and ball fakes. Buccino also moves well without the ball to find space and make life difficult on defenders chasing him. He has the offensive skill set to be effective at the college level. Currently holds offers from the University of Dallas and Hendrix.

 

Abel Hutchinson | Bentonville | Wing

At 6-foot-4, Hutchinson is a do-it-all guy. He’s tough, physical, and plays with tremendous effort in all facets. He can get his own shot, slash, and facilitate off the dribble on offense, and is a hard-nosed defender on the other end. I loved his energy on the glass against Bentonville West, securing 8 rebounds in huge moments down the stretch. He’s a strong screen-setter and is capable of scoring off the roll and pop. Hutchinson is a versatile player on both sides of the ball and is worthy of a shot in college.

 

Jevon Hill | Legacy | Forward 

Standing at 6-foot-8, Hill has good size and long arms. Even with his slight build, he’s effective on the inside as a defender and has the mobility to switch out onto the perimeter. Plays with active hands and is keyed in on that end. His offense is what really caught my eye – the senior connected on 3 of his 4 attempts from deep against Dream City, showing off a smooth stroke with a high release point, making it difficult to contest. With the length and shooting prowess to be a prototypical stretch-four, Hill has great potential and should get a solid opportunity at the college level.

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