BOSTON -– Notes and observations from Friday’s scrimmage between No. 2 Central Catholic, the defending Division 1 North finalist, and No. 3 BC High, who suffered a first round bounce from last year’s Division 1 South tournament:
Nelson’s game has transformed: Returning All-Stater Tyler Nelson has been known in the past as a great outside shooter for Central Catholic, and he still is. However, he showed tonight that he has the ability to run the Central offense and also score baskets going to the rim off the dribble. He still needs to add strength, but he looks a lot more confident this year with the ball in his hands. For what it’s worth, he’s still one of the best shooters and the state, and possibly the best -– he knocked down five 3-pointers in total.
BCH’s two-headed monster: BC High senior Jameilen Jones looked every bit deserving of All-State honors with his play tonight. The strong 6-foot-3 forward led the Eagles’ offense in scoring and was also their most consistent rebounder. His jumpshot is still a work in progress, but he was still able to beat defenders off the dribble for layups and dunks. Because of his tremendous upper body strength, he was able to finish through contact and get to the free throw line on several occasions, where more often than not he is automatic.
Charles Collins was the standout performer of the scrimmage, giving the Eagles a second go-to scorer on the perimeter. A true point guard who is also a gifted scorer, Collins scored on a wide variety of lay-ups, runners, floaters, and mid-range jumpshots. Collins has a quick first step and a nice vertical for a point guard, making him a matchup nightmare for opposing defenses this year.
Role players step up for CC: Nick Cambio, for the most part, was unable to get much going offensively because of BC High’s zone defense, but he was a very intimidating presence on defense and on the glass. Forward Joel Berroa was in a similar circumstance, though on a few occasions he was able to finish open lay-ups on the open floor, and like Cambio, made his presence felt on the offensive glass.
Doug Gemmell was also impressive at the forward position for Central, rebounding at a high rate and stretching the offense with his ability to hit shots from outside. Lucas Hammel, showing off a much stronger physique, gave them a reliable ballhandler in the backcourt who can make plays for others; his ability to drive to the rim with either hand helped Nelson get open for threes.