Thon Maker & Skal Labissierre Win MVP Awards at the 5th Annual Ballislife All-American Game
Ronnie FloresRonnie has evaluated basketball talent for 20 years and has over 15 years of experience in publishing, editing and managing high school sports websites for companies such as Student Sports, ESPN and Ballislife. Ronnie compiles the FAB 50 National Team Rankings while serving as an account manager and consultant for grassroots event run by Ballislife and other companies, in addition to serving as a color commentator on high school broadcasts.
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MVP Thon Maker and Malik Beasley lead Team Elite to a 113-110 victory over Team Future at the 2015 Ballislife All-American Game. Team Future makes a second half comeback only to have a last-second 3-point attempt fall short.
Long Beach, Calif. — It looked like the 5th Annual Ballislife All-American Game presented by U.S. Army was going to be one of those old-fashioned all-star games where one team doesn’t get back in transition and gets blown out.
It happened to Team Future, as Team Elite jumped out to a quick double-digit lead and grew its lead to as big as 26 points, 49-23, in the first half. In the second half, however, Team Future made a spirited comeback and eventually took the lead at 108-107 on a layup by Dwayne Bacon of Oak Hill Academy (Mouth of Wilson, Va.) with 1:03 remaining in the game. It actually took a 3-point lead, but Team Elite executed better down the stretch to pull out a 113-110 victory before a near capacity crowd and a live broadcast on CBS Sports Network at Long Beach (Calif.) City College.
The clinching points came on a dunk by Thon Maker of Orangeville Prep (Mono, Ontario, Can.) off a pretty dish by Donovan Mitchell of Brewster Academy (Wolfeboro, N.H.). Team Future had the ball one final time with a chance to tie with 9.7 seconds remaining. Isaiah Briscoe of Roselle Catholic (Roselle, N.J.) fired a 3-pointer that was just long. The rebound caromed long and the ball ended up in the hands of Oregon-State bound Stevie Thompson Jr. of Bishop Montgomery (Torrance, Calif.), whose 3-pointer was short as the buzzer sounded.
“I just want to keep my eyes open and I enjoyed this opportunity to play,” said Maker, who was named Team Elite MVP with 17 points (8-of-10 shooting), six rebounds and three blocked shots. “I want to be myself and play the right way. Getting the win was also important.”
Also leading the winning team was Malik Beasley of St. Francis (Alpharetta, Ga.). The Florida St.-bound shooting guard finished with a game-high 22 points on 9-of-18 shooting.
Helping Team Future get back in the game from its 63-47 halftime deficit was Bacon — another Leonard Hamilton recruit headed to Florida State. Bacon finished with 20 points, including 15 after intermission. Briscoe also had 20 points for Team Future.
The game’s most consistent player was Team Future’s Skal Labissierre of Reach Your Dreams (Memphis, Tenn.). The 6-foot-11 Kentucky-bound forward had 16 points (eight in each half) and controlled the boards. He finished with 16 rebounds, with eight in the first half and eight in the second.
“We had to get out of the all-star game mentality after halftime,” Labissierre said. “It was a fun experience and a good way to go out.”
DUNK & 3-POINT CONTEST PRESENTED BY EASTBAY
In a development that surprised no one who watched the practices leading up to Saturday’s festivities, UNLV commit Derrick Jones of Archbishop Carrol (Radnor, Pa.) won the Ballislife Slam Dunk Contest presented by Eastbay with three perfect score dunks of 50. Two of Jones’ dunks were so fluid and spectacular the BIL judges didn’t exactly know how to score them until they realized the crowd reaction. Jones defeated Mithcell in the final. Mitchell advanced with a combined score of 96 points on two dunks.
Jones, one of the few players who was a legitimate gripe about not being selected for the McDonald’s All-American Game, has no doubt he would have won the dunk contest in Chicago or at any other national all-star game.
“I don’t lose too many dunk contests,” said Jones, who hit a growth spurt in middle school and began dunking prior to the start of eighth grade. “It’s what I do.”
3 POINT CONTEST
Briscoe won the 3-Point Contest presented by Eastbay over Maker, who hit 8 out of 8 in a tie breaker to advance to the final round. Briscoe was confident, purposely not finishing the final two racks after taking the scoring lead in the first round with 11 points. In the final, Briscoe bested Maker on the last rack and said, “I’m the best 3-point shooter in the country” when interviewed after the contest.
STATS PROVIDED BY CALIFORNIAPREPS.RIVALS.COM
Team Future 110:
- 1-Skal Labissiere (Reach Your Dreams, Memphis TN), C – 8/11 fg, 16 reb, 2 ast, 2 blk, 2 pf, 16 pts
- 2-Tyler Dorsey (Maranatha, Pasadena CA), G – 3/9 fg, 2/3 ft, 5 reb, 2 ast, 1 stl, 1 pf, 10 pts
- 4-Dwayne Bacon (Oak Hill, Mouth of Wilson VA), F – 9/19 fg, 1/2 ft, 4 reb, 3 ast, 2 stl, 20 pts
- 6-Derrick Jones (Archbishop Carroll, Radnor PA), F – 3/7 fg, 2 reb, 1 ast, 2 stl, 1 pf, 6 pts
- 12-Isaiah Briscoe (Roselle Catholic, Roselle NJ), G – 5/15 fg, 9/14 ft, 3 reb, 4 ast, 2 pf, 20 pts
- 0-Horace Spencer (Findlay Prep, Las Vegas NV), F – 0/3 fg, 3 reb, 1 blk ,1 stl, 0 pts
- 3-Paris Austin (Bishop O’Dowd, Oakland CA), G – 1/2 fg, 1/2 ft, 1 reb, 3 pf, 4 pts
- 5-Dejounte Murray (Rainier Beach, Seattle WA), F – 8/14 fg, 5 reb, 5 ast, 2 stl, 1 pf, 18 pts
- 11-Stevie Thompson Jr. (Bishop Montgomery, Torrance CA), G – 2/8 fg, 2 reb, 1 ast, 4 pts
- 25-Bennie Boatwright (Village Christian, Sun Valley CA), F – 2/4 fg, 6 reb, 1 ast, 2 stl, 4 pts
- 42-Jeremy Hemsley (Damien, La Verne CA), G – 4/4 fg, 3 reb, 2 ast, 8 pts
Team Elite 113:
- 2-Jalen Adams (Brewster Academy, Wolfeboro NH), G – 6/15 fg, 6 reb, 5 ast, 3 pf, 12 pts
- 5-Malik Beasley (St. Francis, Alpharetta GA), F – 9/18 fg, 2/2 ft, 2 reb, 1 ast, 1 blk, 2 pf, 22 pts
- 14-Thon Maker (Orangeville Prep, Mono ONT Canada), C – 8/10 fg, 1/1 ft, 6 reb, 1 ast, 3 blk, 2 stl, 17 pts
- 15-Chimezie Metu (Lawndale HS, Lawndale CA), F – 3/4 fg, 5 reb, 3 ast, 1 stl, 2 pf, 6 pts
- 45-Donovan Mitchell (Brewster Academy, Wolfeboro NH), G – 5/10 fg, 9 reb, 4 ast, 2 stl, 2 pf, 10 pts
- 00-Chance Comanche (Beverly Hills HS, Beverly Hills CA), C – 2/3 fg, 3 reb, 1 blk, 3 pf, 5 pts
- 1-Justin Simon (Brewster Academy, Wolfeboro NH), G – 4/8 fg, 1/2 ft, 2 reb, 6 ast, 1 blk, 1 pf, 9 pts
- 7-Kendall Small (Mayfair, Lakewood CA), G – 2/7 fg, 3/5 ft, 3 reb, 1 ast, 2 stl, 7 pts
- 11-Rex Pflueger (Mater Dei, Santa Ana CA), F – 2/5 fg, 3 reb, 2 ast, 2 stl, 2 pf, 4 pts
- 20-Corey Sanders (Faith Baptist, Lakeland FL), G – 4/8 fg, 1/4 ft, 3 reb, 4 ast, 3 stl, 9 pts
- 22-Marquese Chriss (Pleasant Grove, Elk Grove CA), F – 6/9 fg, 2 reb, 1 blk, 12 pts