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Oregon's own impress in national event

HILLSBORO, Ore. -- The Les Schwab Invitational is always one of the better stops on the West Coast recruiting trail and this season is no different. There are always a number of hidden gems -- Beaverton's Jordan Railey comes immediately to mind -- in both the early and late rounds.

While Railey was throwing down a number of dunks, 6-9 junior Kyle Wiltjer (Portland, Ore./Jesuit) was torching the nets with his prolific stroke from deep. Although Oregon doesn't put out a bevy of Division I prospects, Railey and Wiltjer will have no problem bagging one of those scholarships before they graduate.

On the event's second day the stars came out and shined.
Terrence Jones, the 6-9 ESPNU 100 prospect out of Portland, Ore./Jefferson, put on a show with 38 points and 12 rebounds to go along with a few dazzling assists and 6 monster blocks. His skill package is quite special and he definitely should be a McDonald's All-American come spring.

In addition to Jones, Oak Hill Academy (Mouth of Wilson, Va.) put away a feisty Sunset (Portland) club with outstanding guard play from its terrific senior trio of 6-2 Pe'Shon Howard, 6-5 Doron Lamb and 6-0 Juwan Staten. This potent threesome is devastating in the open court and can dominate a game in a variety of ways.

Standout players

Kyle Wiltjer, PF (6-foot-9, 215)
2011, Portland, Ore./Jesuit

Wiltjer, an ESPNU Super 60 prospect, exhibited his skill throughout the contest as he drained shots from all over the court. He's a young-looking junior with a lengthy frame and decent athleticism. He isn't going to overpower his opponents, but he'll dissect them with skill and savvy. His feathery touch from beyond the stripe (4-of-6 on 3s) was on display and his release is impeccable. In addition, he utilizes the up-fake to get by his defenders and can finish with either hand. His passing prowess is impressive as well; he has the height to see over defenders and make the appropriate pass. On the other hand, he needs to get much stronger and tougher in the next couple of seasons if he is to be an impact player at the highest level. He struggles scoring with contact and he isn't very aggressive around the basket as he needs to be. Furthermore, his back-to-the-basket game needs polishing as well, as he isn't nearly as comfortable in that setting as opposed to facing up his opponent. Overall, Wiltjer has a significant upside due to his skill and feel for the game. If he decides to develop a nasty streak his game will go to another level.

Terrence Jones, SF (6-9, 230)
2010, Portland, Ore./Jefferson

Jones may be the most unique prospect in the country. The lengthy lefty with an incredible reach has quite the offensive arsenal. He is a tad unorthodox, athletically that is, but he had a number of strong finishes in the paint area. His versatile game can hurt his opponents inside and out. He does have a love affair with the 3-point shot, but it goes in more often than not. It's a slow release, but it has an excellent arc to it and it always lands softly. He can handle it well in the open court and his passing ability is very underrated. Although he can hurt his opponents from the perimeter, he can be a beast in the paint area as well, usually finishing off offensive rebounds with thunderous dunks. Due to his perimeter skills and up-fakes, he was able to get to the rim off the dribble on a consistent basis. Although he was by far the best talent on the floor, he played with a high motor and was just as dominant on the defensive end, blocking shots and hitting the defensive glass. If Jones, one of the nation's top unsigned seniors, can continue to develop a post game -- a jump hook would be nice -- he will be a nightmare matchup at the next level a year from now.

Surprise players

Jordan Railey, PF (6-10, 220)
2010, Beaverton, Ore.

Railey has picked up where he left off this summer with an outstanding performance in the first round of the Les Schwab Invitational. His lengthy frame has thickened up some and his skill level continues to improve as well. He is much more assertive around the basket -- he notched five dunks in a game -- and he appears to be much more confident than a year ago. His post skills are developing as is his footwork in the paint area. He reads the defense before making his move and he turns over his left shoulder very well -- usually ending up with a nifty jump hook. In addition, he has a developing drop-step move that resulted in a couple of dunks. He has a nice touch that extends out to the stripe and is a very efficient free throw shooter. If Railey continues to improve at this rate, there is no doubt that he should end up somewhere at the high-major level.

Landen Lucas, PF (6-8, 200)

2012, Portland, Ore./Sunset
Lucas has definitely progressed in the past year. He has a good frame with long arms and broad shoulders, and his overall post game is coming together. His back-to-the-basket game is very methodical and patient, and he has solid footwork considering his youth. He has a nice up-and-under move as well as a decent jump hook. He can step out and face up his opponent and hit the jump shot at the elbow. He is a decent athlete at this stage, but that should improve with added strength and maturity. Overall, he is one of the more promising bigs out West regardless of class.

Les Schwab Notes

• Rainier Beach out of Seattle has a few intriguing prospects in 6-5 senior Lonnie Pearson, 6-5 junior Jeff Perkins and 6-6 junior JoJo Stroud. Pearson has a lengthy frame and is an excellent passer, but he didn't show much of a jump shot. Perkins, on the other hand, is an undersized 4-man who is very springy. The left-handed Stroud displayed a smooth touch from 19 feet in.

• Montana got a good one in the blue-collar big Billy Reader (Lake Oswego, Ore.). He isn't a high-level athlete, but he does have very long arms and he's relentless around the basket.

• Grant (Portland, Ore.) has a definite sleeper in 5-11 junior Anthony Penney. He's an undersized 2-guard, but he's very quick off the dribble and has a knack of getting to the rim. If he can develop some point guard skills he'll be more attractive for the next level.

Jordan Akwenuke, a 6-6 junior out of Portland, Ore./Jesuit, has a wing-type frame but his skills translate better to the 4-spot. He has a soft touch to the elbow and is deceptively bouncy in the paint area.

Jordin Mayes, a 6-2 senior out of Los Angeles/Westchester, had his full array of guard skills going as he dropped off a number of fine passes to go along with his smooth stroke.

• One of the top unsigned sleepers in the West is 6-5 Steven Madison (Portland, Ore./ Jefferson). He's a wing-type who is deceptively explosive in transition and can knock down the 3-point shot with regularity.

• Kidus Ephram, a 6-7 junior out of Portland, Ore./Central Catholic, was a definite surprise during the event's second day of action. He has a solid frame with decent length and he appears to be a solid Big Sky Conference candidate at the 5. He is a tad mechanical around the basket, but he did have a fairly solid jump hook and he rebounded well in traffic.

Garrett Jackson, a 6-6 USC signee out of Portland, Ore./Westview, has a willowy frame and a soft shooting touch, but I'm not sure what position he's going to play at the next level. He slashes well to the basket, but his ball skills need to sharpen up to play the 3 at the next level.

Austin Kuemper, a 6-9 junior out of Portland, Ore./Westview, has filled out some since last season, and he continues to be active at both ends. However, although he is bouncy and runs well, he has very little skill around the basket and he needs to polish his footwork and fundamentals to be an impact Division I prospect.

Anthony Holton, a 6-1 senior out of Portland, Ore./Sunset, put together a solid performance against Oak Hill Academy. He isn't a true 1, but he managed the offense well, does a nice job sealing his opponent, and hit a number of pull-up jump shots in traffic.

• Pe'Shon Howard, a 6-1 senior out of Mouth of Wilson, Va./Oak Hill Academy, is an undersized 2-guard, but he makes plays at both ends. He can break defenders down off the dribble, is a very astute passer and can knock down the 3-point shot.

• He does many things well and has a terrific frame, but 6-5 senior Doron Lamb (Oak Hill Academy) will need to tighten up his jump shot to keep defenses honest at the next level.


Joel Francisco is the West Coast recruiting coordinator for ESPN's Scouts Inc.