There were well over 260 campers at the 2019 Pangos All-West Frosh/Soph Camp at Lynwood (Calif.) and with that many participants over a two-day event, it’s not surprising there was an assortment of talent levels on display.
There was an abundance of wings between 6-foot-3 and 6-foot-6 who are excellent college prospects and how much more they grow and develop will determine what level. There was a dearth of true, pass-first point guards, but even among the scoring lead guards, those that played the game the right way stood out. When the dust settled, however, it was two skilled post players who took home camp Co-Most Outstanding Player honors.
Sophomores (2022) Aidan Shaw (6-foot-7) of Blue Valley (Stilwell, KS) and Kijani Wright (6-foot-8) of Windward (Los Angeles) battled in a terrific camp game on Saturday afternoon and again in the Cream of the Crop Top 30 Game.
Wright is well known to basketball scouts and fans on the West Coast and did nothing to dispel his standing as the top post player in California’s 2022 class. He plays physical and under control and his back to the basket moves continue to improve.
Shaw gave him everything he could handle and pushed Wright to play to his vast potential. Shaw has a better perimeter game than Wright and displayed a sweet shooting stroke with terrific lift and follow through. He also is an aggressive playmaker around the basket, and when Wright and others challenged him at the rim, he more than held his own defensively.
Their matchup inside was the snapshot moment that will be remembered about this camp in the year’s to come as they develop as high major college prospects.
In the Cream of the Crop Top 30 All-Star Game, Wright’s high school and camp teammate Dylan Andrews, a 6-foot-3 2022 prospect, nailed a two-for-one free throw with 5.4 seconds to go to seal the White Club’s 118-115 victory over the Black Club.
If Shaw or Wright hadn’t had such a dominant impact, then Andrews would be next in line as the top prospect at the event. He is a physical guard who attacks even the slightest of openings under control. While some of his teammates tended to get carried away hunting offense at camp, Andrews kept a steady and effective approach to the game, finishing the Top 30 game with 17 points and four assists, including three pointers. Wright had eight points four rebounds while Shaw had 16 points and eight rebounds in a losing effort.
Game MVPs were 6-foot-4 2022 Christian Moore of Brentwood (Los Angeles) for the White Club with 15 points and seven rebounds and 6-foot-4 2022 Joseph “JoJo” Hunter of San Joaquin Memorial (Fresno, Calif.) for the Black Club with eight points, eight assists and six rebounds.
With such a deep camp, much of our focus was spent evaluating prospects who either didn’t come in with a big reputation or were unknowns in major West Coast scouting circles. Here are ten players who bumped up their recruiting stock by playing well over the course of the two-day camp.
Pangos All-West Frosh/Soph 10 Breakout Performers
Justin Daniels, Mater Dei (Santa Ana, Calif.) 6-4 2023 SG: He may not get much playing time for one of California’s finest teams, which should start fairly high in November¹s preseason FAB 50 rankings release, but that doesn’t mean this young shooting guard is not a terrific prospect. Daniels has a calm, cool and collected demeanor on the court and a nice package of skills. Daniels has good court vision and is usually looking for the hit ahead offensive player and also does a good job of finding creases on the fast break. He also has solid form on his pull up jumper and is an under control athlete. He’s the younger brother of former Taft (Woodland Hills, Calif.) all-state performer, and 2014 NCAA Final Four Most Outstanding Player, DeAndre Daniels.
Benny Gealer, Rolling Hills Prep (San Pedro, Calif.) 6-0 2022 PG: We cheated a bit with Gealer because he actually had a terrific freshman season and is fairly well known to scouts. After his performance over the weekend, however, Gealer has to talked about as one of the best prospects in California’s 2022 class regardless of position. Gealer gets our vote as the best shooter in attendance, and in the showdown between Shaw and Wright, it was this shooting point guard who stole the show down the stretch with his onslaught from the outside. Gealer can create space to get his shot off, and when he gets his feet set, he easily gets defenders off balance because they understand if their closeout is too late, it’s near money in the bank.
Trey Knight, Moreau Catholic (Hayward, Calif.) 5-11 2022 PG: This low-gravity point guard was easily one of the most improved players in attendance. We’ve tracked Knight since he participated in middle school camps and he¹s vastly improved in the last calendar year. Knight has shed some of the “baby fat” and is quicker and more confident. He’s always been a heady, team-first talent, but is now getting by defenders at a higher rate and it has opened up his offensive game. Knight has a nice ball in same hand, same direction burst into the key and also is now utilizing his cross over dribble in a half court setting to set up scoring plays for himself or others. He plays for his father Frank Knight, a former all-state player at Fremont of Oakland, at Moreau Catholic.
Kaylon Mason, Central (Fresno, Calif.) 6-6 2022 SF: A relative newcomer to the elite camp scene, Mason has a quiet and friendly demeanor off-the-court, but get him in between the lines and he transforms into a bull in a china shop. Mason attacks the rim with the vengeance and was one of the best slashers in attendance. Once he gets downhill on the wing, his percentages of making something positive happen are sky high because he’s rarely out of control. Mason has a developing perimeter game, challenges shots near the paint and also goes after rebounds outside his area. Mason will continue to develop as he adds strength and experience in settings such as this camp.
Jermaine Rodgers III, Ayala (Chino Hills, Calif.) 6-2 2022 CG: Rodgers has three of the main ingredients you look for in a scoring guard: He’s has a strong frame, good offensive skills and shoots the perimeter shot well. Rodgers moves to his offensive spots well and attacks the baseline with authority. If a defender is just a shade out of position, forget it, it’s a Rodgers blow by. Rodgers was one of the best players in the Final Cream of the Crop Game, netting 11 points.
Kylan Boswell, Colony (Ontario, Calif.) 6-0 2023 PG: Boswell made the move out west from the Chicago area and quickly put his name on the local radar with an impressive performance at the Hoops By Ugland Skills Summit in August. The freshman point guard made the most of his opportunity to play in front of a large contingent of scouts, local, regional and national alike. Boswell is one of the highest IQ players you’ll find anywhere and regardless of class. He plays with impressive pace, surveys the floor in transition, delivers passes with timing and pinpoint accuracy and plays out of high ball-screen action with a feel well beyond his years.
Osiris Grady, Silverado (Las Vegas, Nev.) 6-6 2023 F: Grady is an intriguing long-term forward prospect because of his versatile skill-set. The 6-6 forward has a strong frame, but is also mobile in the half-court when setting screens and operating on the perimeter. He changes ends of the floor well in transition and beat defenses down the floor multiple times for easy looks in the paint where he finished with either hand. What stood out most about Grady was his passing ability out of the low and mid-post spots. He found cutters with shovel passes and nicely-placed bounce passes. Grady scored 10 points in the “Next 20” Cream fo the Crop all-star game, helping his team to a 59-53 victory.
Garrison Phelps, St. Mary’s (Phoenix, Ariz.) 6-4 2022 WF: Phelps immediately jumped out as one of the more powerful athletes in the building, and as the camp went on, showed that he had a deep skill-set to go along with his speed and leaping abilities. Phelps is a big-time finisher in transition. He gets out wide on the break and uses his long strides to quickly cover ground and burst into the paint where he can finish through contact and above the rim. Dunking isn’t the only thing that Phelps does well, either, as he made it a point to rebound the defensive glass, push the break, and make the simple but smart pass to an open teammate.
Jaylen Thompson, St. Joseph’s Notre Dame (Alameda, Calif.) 6-6 2022 F: Thompson was one of the more active players on both ends of the floor and it paid off for him as he was selected for the Top 30 Cream of the Crop all-star game. In that game, Thompson’s activity around the basket and willingness to run the floor helped him score 12 points and pull down six rebounds in one of the more well-rounded performances among the Top 30 selections of the camp. Thompson has impressive size and length for his position, and just simply put, played harder than most of the others over the weekend. The 6-6 wing had a handful of highlight-reel dunks, big time rebounds in traffic and is a versatile perimeter defender.
Milos Uzan, Desert Pines (Las Vegas, Nev.) 6-3 2022 PG: Uzan had a strong freshman high school campaign, putting up 13.4 points, 4.8 assists and 4.1 rebounds per game, and he brought his all-around game with him over the weekend. Uzan has really nice size and feel for the point guard position and did a nice job of balancing scoring and distributing in a setting which normally calls for forced shots and selfishness on the offensive end. Uzan is a crafty ball handler and finisher around the basket and is an effective scorer and passer in both transition and half-court settings.