The Elite 8 Fall Preview was only a small taste of what the Sacramento and San Joaquin Section have to offer. The fall preview featured many players that will be playing at the collegiate level.
The stands were packed, snack bar full of options, and a nice hospitality room for the coaches and media; which was sponsored by Wingstop and Simply Basketball.
Many of the players performed really well as predicted and some exceeded my expectations. Listed below are the top 20 performers of the event (List is based on event performance).
Thank you: Elite 8 Fall Preview Staff, Coach D, Coach Fields, and Monterey Trails High School
Champions: 1 Team 1 Dream
Earv Knox 2019 – Led his team to the championship and was the go-to guy down the stretch and made the right decision each time. Look for Erv to have a big senior season as many D1 colleges are knocking on his door.
Dathan Satchell 2019 – Knocked down NBA three’s consistently and got to the rim after getting his defenders on their toes. A summer on the Adidas Circuit proved to help Dathan’s performance. Make sure to keep an eye out, as he will be one of the top scorers this season!
Steven Richardson 2019 – Scored at will all day and found the bigs for highlight plays. Will be the go-to guy for Grant this season as they look to win a state title. Grant made it to the DII semi-finals last season and everyone is returning.
Marquis Hargrove 2020 – Showed that he can score from all 3 levels of the floors, and finished above the rim on numerous occasions. As teams will focus on CSU East Bay commit Kaito Williams, don’t forget to look out for Quis as he is an elite scorer himself.
Gavin Wilburn 2020 – A kid that did it all for the team from making the right passes, rebounding, blocking shots, and getting to the basket. The Cougars will be looking for a D4 state title and the team will go as far as Gavin takes them.
AJ Mcgee 2020 – No one was able to stay in front of him all weekend. He also showed a great mid-range pull up when he had his defenders on their heels.
Josh Morgan 2019 – He blocked everyone coming down the lane and was able to run back before most guards on the floor. He also finished above the rim over a few defenders! Very interesting prospect and reminds me a little of Marquis Chriss
Corey Yerger 2021 – Showed he is ready to take on a big role for Grant this season. He attacked everyone in front of him and made some nifty plays in the championship game. One of the youngest players at the event showed no fear. Corey is a top 2021 in norcal based on his performance.
Alex Merkviladze 2019 – Big man that loves contact, he showed some nice post moves and converted with a nice hook. He also knocked down 3 pointers at an efficient rate. He will be a force in the middle for Modesto Christain this season.
Josh Williams 2020 – After a big summer with 16u Lakeshow, Josh showed he is ready for Varsity Basketball this season. He had the play of the day, dunking over a defender; which had the fans on their feet. A player that can play either guard positions and will be a key player in Sheldon’s run for a state title.
Bryce Fitzgerald 2019 – Versatile big man showed he is a lethal shooter from the midrange and behind the ARC. Once his shot is going, he has the ability to use a pump fake and get by his defender.
Mike Pearson 2020 – Lighting quick and knocked down the three-point with consistency at the Elite. He looks to be a lot stronger this season and his combination of strength and deadly speed will be important for Modesto Christian state run this season.
Dj Pruitt 2019 – Long and athletic, DJ was able to block every shot coming to the basket and finished everything with a dunk! He will make every game entertaining this season for Grant HS.
David Jones 2019 – Another athletic big that played really well at the Elite 8 was a disruptive defender getting a bunch of steals and blocks. The combo of DJ and David will be a problem for Sacramento.
Kendall Munson 2020 – A improving ball handler and jump shooter. His strength, speed, and size is a rare find in Norcal. The more touches he gets, the more successful Capital will be. From all the attention he draws, he proved to be great passer!
Kaito Williams 2019 – Committed to CSU East Bay, one of the top scorers in Norcal. Kaito showed his improved passing ability out of the pick and roll.
Devin Small 2019 – The catalyst of the Cougars big upset against the Big Dawgs scoring 14 points. Knocked down multiple 3 pointers and was a pest on the defensive end
Jhaylon Martinez 2020 – There is plenty of reasons why so many high majors are knocking on his door. 6’10 with a soft touch and he is not afraid of contact. Jhaylon was able to knock down many 15 footers and even a few three-pointers at the top of the key. This aspect of his game has improved tremendously over the last few months.
Jalen Patterson 2020- A little birdie told me he had deep range before the event and Jalen proved it! He knocked down multiple shots from 30 ft. and finished multiple times through contact. A very gifted scorer and will have another amazing season at Liberty Ranch.
Teiano Hardee 2020 – Was very efficient and used his dribble wisely to attack the basket or one-dribble pullup