2023 Empire Invitational Top Performers
On September 10th afternoon, we paid a visit to the Police Athletic League community center in Harlem for the Empire Invitational, which was run in conjunction with the 50 Ways Foundation and Game Up. In this event, was two games between two CHSAA teams from New York City (Cardinal Hayes and St. Raymond) and two of New Jersey’s finest teams (College Achieve Charter School and The Patrick School). Both games were well-played and showed plenty of action. Below are some of standouts from the event:
Adam Nije 6-2, Point Guard, Cardinal Hayes High School, Class of 2026 - A guard that is fearless and knows one speed: to go. When he has the opportunity, he likes to get to the basket and will even pull up for the occasional jumper. Is also a good distributor of the ball to his teammates, as he looks to give them the ball when the chance for an assist presents itself.
Malik Fields 6-4, Shooting Guard, Cardinal Hayes High School, Class of 2026 - A guard that has the ability to be assertive when he’s the game, as he looks to get his shot off at all times. Likes to play off of screens and is a dangerous shooter when he is in the corner and waiting to shoot a three. When driving to the basket, he is very fearless and loves to take chances on the offensive end.
Jermel Thomas 6-0, Point Guard, Cardinal Hayes High School, Class of 2026 - A guard that has the ability to make his presence felt in many ways. Has a penchant of beating his man off the dribble and loves to drive to the basket. Has good defensive tendencies and will stick to his man as a way to get the ball off of a steal. Knows when to give his teammates the ball, especially when it’s a fast break.
Deuce Jones, 6-2, Shooting Guard, College Achieve Charter School (NJ), Class of 2024 - A guard that has the ability to make big plays when he’s on the court. Has the ability to shoot from long range and is able to be explosive in the open lane. Has a nice jumper, which he uses to his advantage at all times. Is a good passer and finds ways to get his teammates involved on the floor.
Nahsirr Hart, 6-8, Forward, College Acheive Charter School (NJ), Class of 2025 - A forward with a long wingspan, he has size and plenty of length and is prone to doing plenty on both ends of the court. Has the ability to alter or block shots on the defensive end and is a solid rebounder. Makes his presence felt on the offensive end, as he is a prolific dunker & also has a nice touch when getting his shot off.
Jaiden Glover 6-4, Shooting Guard, The Patrick School, Class of 2024 - (St Johns University commit) A guard that has the ability to take over a game with his scoring presence. Is able to make powerful drives to the basket, which results in him finishing at the rim efficiently. Uses his athleticism to his advantage on both ends of the court. Has the ability to shoot from long range & from mid-range, as well.
Abdoulaye Konate 6-5, Shooting Guard, The Patrick School, Class of 2024 - A guard that has a penchant for making big plays when on the court for his team. Has a nice wingspan and is able to obtain rebounds and run down court with ease. Loves to run on the fast break and is able to finish efficiently around the rim.
Assane Mbaye, 7-2, Center, The Patrick School, Class of 2024 - A forward that likes to run up and down the floor & has good eyes when on the defensive end. Is great at attacking the glass and uses his size as an advantage. Has a penchant for getting key blocks and can dominate at the rim.
Tai Turnage 5-11, Point Guard, St. Raymond High School, Class of 2025 - A guard that has the ability to slow down or speed up the tempo whenever he’s on the court. Has the ability to shoot from long-range and can attack the basket when in transition. Despite his small frame, he is able to attack with fearlessness. Had the ability to distribute the ball and get teammates the ball with ease.
Anderson Diaz 5-9, Point Guard, St. Raymond High School, Class of 2027 - A guard that has plenty of poise and is always focused when it comes to running a team on offense. Has the ability to make his presence felt at all times when driving to the basket and finishing g with efficiency. Has the ability to shoot from mid-range and has a nice shooting touch.
Kamari Whyte 6-3, Shooting Guard, St. Raymond High School, Class of 2026 - A guard that has plenty of toughness when on the court. Is a very strong player that is fearless when going up for a rebound and is able to absorb contact when going to the basket. Has a penchant for shooting jumpers from various areas on the floor.