It was a pretty wild week in the Land of 10,000 Lakes this past week in high school hoops. In between taking in various Timberwolves and college games, I was able to see a number of the state’s best prospects and they did not disappoint. Hopkins upset Minnesota No. 1 and FAB 50 ranked Wayzata (Plymouth, Minn.), Richfield (Minn.) surprised DeLaSalle (Minneapolis, Minn.) on a 40-foot buzzer beater to win the game, and small town Dawson Boyd (Dawson, Minn.) made the journey to the Twin Cities to play in the Grassroots Sizzle Jump City Hoops Classic.
Needless to say, there were a number of players who stood out, and here are some of the top performers from the games that I saw this past week in Minnesota.
Anthony Smith III, PG/SG, Hopkins HS (MN), 2025
Perhaps the best shooter in the state of Minnesota regardless of class, Anthony Smith III provided the scoring presence that Hopkins needed to upset Wayzata, dropping 20 points (four 3-point). Smith III has shown continual improvement as both a playmaker and a slasher, showing more confidence attacking the rack and facilitating for others. Running with D1 Minnesota, Smith already holds a number of D1 offers and has firmly supplanted himself on the radar of countless programs.
Brayson Boike, 6’6, SF, Dawson Boyd HS (MN), 2025
Coming from rural Minnesota, it’s rare to get to see teams from out that way make it to the Twin Cities. Unless you’re trying to make a three hour trek in the dead of winter to remote areas of Minnesota, it’s best to seize the opportunity when these teams come to the city. Brayson Boike, a versatile 6-foot-6 forward, did not disappoint in the Grassroots Sizzle Jump City Classic. With the University of St. Thomas and North Dakota both in the house to watch him, Boike changed the game with his inside-out play and fluidity on the defensive end. He controlled the interior defensively, yet also showed his perimeter skill set by immediately grabbing the rock and initiating the offense. Running with D1 Minnesota on the 3SSB circuit, Brayson is going to be a guy who mid-major programs will be following closely.
Jayden Moore, 6’0, PG, Hopkins HS (MN), 2026
The state’s best pure point guard did so much more than showed up in the box score in Hopkins’ upset victory over Wayzata. Dropping a triple double (12 points, 12 rebounds, 11 assists, 4 steals), he made an immense impact as the catalyst for Hopkins on both ends of the hardwood. Already holding offers from Baylor, West Virginia, Illinois, and Minnesota, Moore will be the focal point of the J-Sizzle 17U team on the 3SSB Circuit.
Daveion “Davie” Hart, 6’5, SF, Hopkins HS (MN), 2025
A player who has constantly improved over the last two years, “Davie” Hart saved his best for Hopkins win over Wayzata. The lanky swingman changed the game with his length defensively, hit open 3-pointers, and showed much more assertiveness with his offensive game as a scorer than we’ve seen in the past, finishing with 22 points. The flexibility that he offers coaches on both ends of the floor will make him one of the more interesting Minnesota names to follow throughout his senior year.
C.J. Armstrong, 6’3, SG, Richfield HS (MN), 2025
Certain players have the ultimate green light, and CJ Armstrong is certainly one of those dudes for Richfield High School. Averaging 33 points per game, the bouncy scoring guard has developed with quite the reputation, continuing to build on it with his 38-point showing against perennial power DeLaSalle. CJ scored from all three levels, showed extreme confidence throughout the game, and hit a 40-foot shot at the buzzer to give Richfield a 71-70 win.
J.J. Semanko, 6’4, SG/SF, Hopkins HS (MN), 2025
Similar to Hart, Semanko is another player who has made huge strides with his game within the past year and a half. Semanko is an elite shot blocker on the perimeter (blocks a ton of jumpshots), is a creative finisher at the rack when slashing, and has developed into a reliable 3-point shooter. Semanko is another key piece on a special group of Hopkins underclassmen that will all be receiving college scholarships.