2023 JCC Schoolboy Classic Top Performers
By David Cordova,
With all the championship net cutting going on in Connecticut lately, it got us fired up about making a trip to the heart of Connecticut into their high school basketball mecca, the Cardinal Shehan Center in Bridgeport. On this day, The Sheehan Center was hosting the annual JCC Schoolboy Classic. This is an event that pits an All Star team of Connecticut high school seniors against an All Star team of New Jersey high school seniors. It’s an prestigious event hosted by the Bridgeport Jewish Community Center, and we happened to be making it to its 60th anniversary this weekend. As per usual, it featured some great talent on the court. This year it would be Connecticut that would win big on their home turf.
Below are the standouts from the game:
Papa Kante (2023) 6-10, Forward, South Kent School (CT) (University of Michigan commit) - Kante is a physical specimen who is able to outmuscle and outwork his counterparts every time out on the floor. He rebounds and blocks shots at a very high rate. He is also able put the ball on the floor and get down court with ease at all times. He has a nice hook shot, which he uses effectively.
Gavin Griffiths (2023) 6-7, Shooting Guard, Kingswood-Oxford School (CT), (University of Rutgers commit) - A guard that has plenty of energy when on the court, as he is able to score in multiple ways. Has plenty of athleticism, which he uses to his advantage every time he drives to the basket. Is fearless when it comes to obtaining rebounds and can also block shots when in the paint area.
Anthony Parker (2023) 6-2 Shooting Guard, Xavier High School (CT) - A guard that has a penchant for taking on anybody coming towards his way whenever he’s on the floor. Has a nice shooting touch when he’s on the perimeter and has excellent court vision, as he is able to distribute the ball to his teammates. Is able to create for himself off the dribble and is a solid playmaker. Also can shoot from long range.
Christian McClease (2024) 6-4, Shooting Guard, Wilbur Cross High (CT) (Choate Rosemary Hall post grad commit) - A guard that is a pure scorer that can make his presence felt when on the court. Is fearless when going to the basket, as he knows he can draw fouls, but also is confident. Has a penchant from getting his shot off from long range and is also great at hitting floaters.
Chris Zajac (2023) 6-8, Forward, Staples High (CT) (Indiana University baseball commit) - A forward that has a penchant for making plenty of noise in the paint area. Has a long wingspan and has the ability to use his physicality to hold his own in the post area. Is able to attack the basket and has great footwork that allows him to go towards getting hook shots and also can drive to the basket.
Anthony Nimani (2024) 6-4, Point Guard, Platt High (CT) (Berkshire School, MA post grad commit) - A guard that has plenty of quickness when it comes to his position. Likes to drive to the basket and is able to get past the opposition as a result of his dribble. Is able to absorb contact when going to the hole and can get to the free-throw line. Also has the ability to find his teammates as they are open on the wing or driving to the basket.
Tyler Tejada, 6-6, Forward, Teaneck High School (NJ) - A forward that has the ability to make his presence felt when on the court. Has plenty of athleticism when it comes to driving to the basket and throwing down dunks with ease. Will step up to the glass and can obtain rebounds and drive down the lane on the fast break. Has the ability to step out and can shoot from long range.
Bryce Stokes, 6-2, Shooting Guard, Paterson East Side High School (NJ) - A guard that has a penchant for using his strength when he drives to the basket. Has the ability to absorb contact when driving to the basket at all times. Has a penchant for hitting jumpers on the perimeter and can also dish out passes to his teammates on the break.
Tavian Pullock, 6-4, Forward, Immaculate Conception High School (NJ) - A forward that is very versatile and can drive to the hole at all times. Finds ways to make plays when he is on the floor. Is very athletic, as he likes to drive to the basket and will throw down dunks easily when on the break. Is also able to feed the opposition the ball when they’re on the run at all times. Does not hesitate to get up for a rebound easily.
Samir Padilla, 5-10, Point Guard, Jackson Memorial High (NJ) - A guard that has plenty of heart and can attack the defense on both ends of the court. Has a penchant for getting steals and can make his presence felt when guarding the opposition. Has a penchant for scoring at will, as he will make put backs and also will shoot from long range and can will go up strong to the basket.
Donavan McKoy, 6-6, Forward, St. Joseph (Montvale) High School (NJ)- A forward that is very alert and is a huge asset to his teammates at all times when he’s on the court. Uses his physicality and his strength to hold his own in the pant area. Will drive to the paint and will play above the rim. Is also able to block shots and obtain rebounds with ease.