Three Ohio teams make Adidas Invite Final Fours; Team Work 15U wins title

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Jon Teske (Medina)

The Final day of the Adidas Invitational came to a close on Sunday with
the Buckeye state flexing its muscles once again. For a state that
doesn’t get a lot of love in team and player rankings on a national
level, Ohio sure does a lot of winning.


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INDIANAPOLIS – The Final day of the Adidas Invitational came to a close on Sunday with the Buckeye state flexing its muscles once again. For a state that doesn’t get a lot of love in team and player rankings on a national level, Ohio sure does a lot of winning.

Ohio placed three teams in the Platinum Bracket Final 4 on Sunday, which included Team Work’s 15 and 17-and-under teams along with the Ohio Basketball Club’s 16-and-under outfit.

Team Work 15U shocked the onlookers in Indianapolis by winning the Adidas Invitational thanks to Sunday wins over the Iowa Barnstormers and then an outstanding Compton Magic (California) team, which steam rolled the competition to that point. The Magic handed Indy Elite 2016 its first loss of the season.

Team Work got by the Iowa Barnstormers (57-46) in the semis behind a total team effort. In the championship, Adam Vincenzo’s squad put on a basketball clinic, which saw Team Work take an 80-53 lead at one point in the second half.

Compton Magic, behind TJ Leaf and Dikembe Martin, would make it interesting late by getting within eight points. However, the California-based team wasn’t able to get any closer as Team Work held on for a 96-88 triumph.

For Vincenzo and his team, it was their second championship of the year, adding to the title at the King James Shooting Stars Classic.

Dublin Coffman’s Luke Vargo scored 21 points in the title tilt to lead Team Work. He was backed by Medina’s Jon Teske and Magnolia’s (WV) Preston Boswell with 14 points, and Athens’ Ibi Watson added 13.

Vargo got Team Work off to a great start by knocking down shots, which is enticing for a lot of schools considering his 6-foot-6 stature.

Teske was a monster in the paint using his size to make it very difficult to score in the lane. The Medina big man has a knack for blocking or getting a piece of shots, and then securing the rebound instead of the offense getting another opportunity. At 6-foot-10, he runs the floor extremely well and shows an excellent motor. His offensive game is coming around and he has excellent touch from the foul line and around 15-feet on the floor. If he continues to progress, look for the big boys to start showing more and more interest.

Boswell was instant offense off the bench knocking down four triples for the winners, and Watson was the go-to-guy whenever things get a little tight. Watson is slithery getting to the hole with the ability to finish with a floater or lay-in. He also was very efficient beyond the arc.

Dublin Coffman’s Seth Fuller chipped in 10 points along with handling the basketball quite a bit against the swarming Magic defense. Fuller is one of the toughest guards in his class despite his size, and he can knock down shots and score in the lane.

Dublin Jerome’s Mason Baich was outstanding as well with his energy, toughness, and athleticism. He will defend until the cows come home, and does a lot of things offensively that go unnoticed. He added nine points, which included three big freebies down the stretch.

Trey Smith had nine points off the bench. The Delphos Jefferson rising sophomore provided toughness for Team Work, and the ability to get to the free-throw line.

Walsh Jesuit’s Mitch Peterson, John Glenn’s Drew Rackley, and Mentor’s Micah Potter also gave big minutes off the pine.

Leaf (6’8/WF/2016) of Foothills Christian HS, who will likely be courted by everyone on the West Coast, scored a game-high 36 points. Martin (6’0/PG/2016) of JW North HS, who is one of the top guards in the West, followed up with 24 thanks to nasty pull-up game.

We were able to catch OBC’s semifinal win over Spiece Indy Heat (71-66), which Anthony Stacey’s squad trailed most of the morning. Carlton Bragg logged a big time performance in this game on defense. The 6-foot-9 rising junior blocked two shots that literally went into the stands. Bragg is showing a better ability to talk on defense as well.

Bragg continues to elevate his game each time out. He plays with a motor that doesn’t quit and Carlton is all over the offensive glass with violent put back dunks. We know he can knock down shots, but it was good to see Carlton doing more damage on the interior this week allowing his team to be more successful.

The usual suitors followed Bragg, but he is hoping a few more schools start to come into the mix, including North Carolina, Arizona, Florida, and Syracuse. Kentucky has been in contact, but no official offer has been made at this point.

Craig Randall, Maverick Rowan, Devon Andrews, Brian Parker, Isaiah Jones, and Devon Robinson continued to provide great team chemistry for OBC in the victory. With every game that passed at the Adidas Invitational, OBC seemed to gel better as a team.

Sharpshooter Reece Dupler of Hebron Lakewood HS and raw big man Demajeo Wiggins (6’8/2015) of Toledo Springfield also gave good minutes.

In the championship game, OBC fell to an excellent Indiana Elite 2015 (97-76) team, but a runner-up finish in a tournament of that level is more than noteworthy.

OBC 16U played the same time as Team Work 15U, so we were only able to catch a few minutes of OBC’s championship game after seeing Stacey’s squad five times throughout the week.

According to Prep Scouting’s Chas Wolfe, Indian Elite’s guard trio of Hyron Edwards, Jalen Coleman, and Chandler White was the difference in the contest. Seeing Indy Elite several times throughout the week, it would be hard to find a better set of guards than these three.

Coleman, who owns an offer from Ohio State and nearly the entire Big 10, was recently offered by UCLA.

White holds an offer from Miami (OH), but several bigger schools are starting to get into the mix and rightfully so.

Team Work’s 17U team played neck-and-neck with Spiece Indy Ice in the semis, but eventually fell to defeat, 56-49.

Indy Ice is arguably the most underrated team in the entire country, and it proved so once again, by thrashing Team Loaded Virginia (91-46) in the finals held on ESPNU. All it does is win.

Team Work didn’t play its best game by any stretch of the imagination, but Indy Ice had a lot to do with that by using its length and athleticism on the defensive end to make it very hard to score. Team Work’s defense was outstanding throughout the week, and it was once again on Sunday, but this time it was beat at its own game.

The usual suspects surrounded the court for Team Work’s semifinal game.

Daeshon Francis, Jordan Garnett, CJ Coleman, and Kendall Rollins led LaSalle Thompson’s Indy Ice squad. Thompson’s son, PJ Thompson, elected to play with the Spiece Indy Heat at the Peach Jam, so Indy Ice was able to overcome that as well.

Warren Central’s (IN) Garnett was one of the bigger stock risers of the tournament.

Other Notable Teams:

Northwest Ohio Basketball Club won the Gold Bracket in the 17U division.

Dayton Metro- Dodson made the Final 4 of the 16U Gold Bracket.

Nova Village defeated TNBA West Red in the 15U Silver Bracket, which was an all Ohio final.

Ohio Basketball Club lost in the semifinals of the 14U Gold Bracket to Indy Elite (51-48), which ended up winning the tournament.

Other Recruiting News:

Zach McCormick of Cincinnati Turpin is reporting a recent offer from Tennessee according to Rivals’ Corey Albertson.

Albertson also reports that Grant Benzinger of Cincinnati Moeller reports new offers from Brown and Radford.

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2013 Ohio HS Football Preview

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