We are near the girls' high school basketball postseason across the country, and we have seen an unprecedented year in terms of programs traveling for top-25 caliber matchups.
Events such as the She Got Game Series, Nike Tournament of Champions, the Tampa Bay Christmas Invitational and the inaugural Girls' Basketball Invitational that was televised on ESPN networks have provided excellent venues and platforms for players to compete among the best.
As we begin the deep dive into the 2023, 2024 and 2025 classes, we take a look at some stock risers, which includes a few players that will make their debut when the 2023 and 2024 classes are refreshed and expanded.
The conversation is a bit different for recruits in the 2025 class. For the most part, players have just entered the varsity level, so the game is a different pace and intensity than before. We have not yet produced a watch list for the '25 class, but there are several players who are in the early discussion at the No. 1 spot.
Class of 2023
G Zoe Brooks
St. John Vianney (N.J.)
In all aspects, Brooks' game has matured this season. She has always been impressively talented with the basketball -- a smooth handle with a feel for one-on-one matchups and the touch to put the ball in the basket. However, it's the way she is doing things now that make her a stock riser.
Moving to St. John Vianney has proven to be beneficial in her intensity and aggressiveness. She is also creating and facilitating to the various talented players on the Vianney roster. Her 3-point shot is falling at a higher percentage, and her floater game may be one of the best in the country. She finishes with contact very well and knocks down free throws. Defensively, she anticipates shooting the passing lanes well both in the half court and in the press.
Brooks is averaging 17.5 points, 4.3 rebounds and 3.8 assists for a Vianney squad that has consistently been in the top five of the SCNext Top 25 high school rankings. Miami, Boston College, NC State, Ole Miss, Texas and Ohio State are among the teams involved in her recruitment.
G Reychel Douglas
Millbrook High School (N.C.)
Douglas got on the radar of many college programs last summer in a supporting role to Stanford-bound McDonald's All-American Indya Nivar on the Carolina Flames. Her fundamental, versatile and team-oriented game showed she had some major potential.
Douglas is a big guard with nice footwork to set her up for the catch-and-shoot jumper. She showed her ability to knock down jumpers out of the relocation and different angles at the Wootten 150 in October. She can run some point and play out of the ball screen, and her floor vision helps create scoring opportunities for her teammates. When players can do those things and are knockdown shooters, the potential is extremely exciting.
She is currently averaging 16.8 points, 7.9 rebounds, 2.5 assists and 3.6 steals per game. Her offers include: Alabama, Arkansas State, Campbell, Delaware, East Carolina, Elon, Florida, Georgia, Hampton, Indiana, James Madison, Mississippi State, Pitt, Quinnipiac, Rice, Wake Forest, UNC-Wilmington, Virginia Tech, Wofford, Georgetown and Northeastern.
W Qadence Samuels
Bishop McNamara (Md.)
Samuels effortlessly runs the floor. She glides baseline to baseline and is a threat to either sprint for an easy layup at the rim or spot up for the transition triple. Her confidence and effectiveness from deep have really improved over the last year. Her improved shot preparation has helped her in all aspects of her shooting, and she attacks the elbows for pull-up jumpers very well.
Defensively, her frame and length allow her to be a real weapon for her team. Her high school and club (Team Takeover) programs emphasize defense, and she has begun to buy in. As that becomes more of a staple, she can be a lock-down type of defender, and her rebounding will improve as she adds more strength.
Samuels, who averages 13.5 points and 6.9 rebounds, has a competitive edge in between the lines that separates her. As she learns to translate that into day-to-day work, consistency and production, watch her stock continue to rise. She has offers from North Carolina, Tennessee, Wake Forest, Florida State, Alabama, Kansas State, West Virginia, Georgia Tech, Virginia Tech Miami, Mississippi State and Pitt.
Class of 2024
PG Katie Fiso
Garfield High School (Wash.)
Fiso is shifty off the bounce and has become efficient in playing in small spaces. Her moves are tight and she changes direction quickly and changes pace very well. She pushes the ball with a purpose up the floor, and she can either create a pull-up jumper for herself or set up a shot for her teammate with her crisp passing skills.
She has become adept at reading the pick-and-roll options and is now patient enough to know how to bait the defense into getting what she wants. Her 3-point shot is as efficient as ever, and defenses have to play her honestly because she can pull it off the dribble with a small window. Her quick trigger as she attacks open space makes opponents overreact, and when they do, she can drop a dime to the roller or manipulate the help to create an open spot-up jumper for one of her wings.
Defensively, Fiso uses her feel for the game and length as a major advantage. She reads schemes well off the ball, and it makes her a good help and recover defender. Averaging 22 points per game, Fiso is one of the best point guards in her class. Her offers include Washington State, Gonzaga, Harvard, Cal, USC, Oklahoma, Arizona, Utah State, Washington, Utah, Montana State, Oregon State, Boise State, Pepperdine, Penn State and UCLA.
F Kennedy Smith
Etiwanda High School (Calif.)
Smith is as physical presence as there is in the country in her class. She has a very strong frame at the forward position with the touch and skills to garner major recruiting attention. She already has offers from UCLA, Cal, Washington State, Arizona, Rutgers and Houston.
Etiwanda has been in the top five of the SCNext rankings since it won the prestigious Nike Tournament of Champions in Phoenix in December, and Smith has anchored its aggressive defense. She can match up with both inside and perimeter players upon a switch. She carves out space for rebounding and attacks the glass hard.
Offensively, Smith has proven she can stretch the defense to the arc, particularly in the slot at the top of the key. She powerfully ducks in for easy post up opportunities and can put the ball on the deck for contact finishes. She can reach the next level as she refines her face-up game. Smith, who averages 18.7 points and 9.3 rebounds, is similar in style to WNBA Rookie of the Year Michaela Onyenwere.
C Adhel Tac
South Grand Prairie High School (Texas)
Tac is a major stock-rising center who is averaging 18 points on 64% shooting, 12 rebounds and 3 blocks this season. Already holding offers from Texas Tech, Indiana, SMU, North Texas, Lamar, UTSA and Oklahoma State, she will have college coaches following her all spring and summer.
Tac has an interesting background. She began playing the game late in junior high. Rather than focusing on her perimeter skills and neglecting basic fundamentals in the paint, her high school program prioritized her footwork and hands. In turn, she has built a balanced base and grown into a multi-skill threat. She can score on the block, face up and read double teams well. She is comfortable with contact and in the crowded paint.
With her height and mobility, she provides a huge defensive presence as well. Challenging and changing shots in the paint and controlling the boards is a massive advantage. As she learns the nuances of pick-and-roll coverages, as well as how to eliminate some fouls, look for her to be a major impact throughout the rest of her high school career.
Class of 2025
PG Darianna Alexander
Purcell Marian High School (Ohio)
Alexander is a lead guard. She carries herself with a confidence and maturity that is beyond her years. She has some serious game that includes breaking down defenders off the dribble with pace and shiftiness or aggressive takes to the rim with her strength and quickness.
Her 3-ball is respectable, but is also still emerging into a true knock-down threat. She shows an intangible in how she leads and directs her teammates with her body language and decision-making.
Currently she is averaging 24.3 points, 12.1 rebounds, 4.6 assists, and 4.2 steals per game. She has over 25 offers so far, including ones from Louisville, Tennessee and Ohio State, among others in the Power 5.
PG Aaliyah Chavez
Lubbock Monterrey High School (Texas)
Chavez is as creative with the ball as any player in the country. She has incredible ballhandling skills, floor vision and passing abilities, and she can knock down shots from deep. She plays the game with a flare and passion that makes her entertaining. Earlier this season, she had a 50-point, 14-rebound, 5-assist performance.
She plays the game with a mature savvy. She faces a myriad of defensive game plans that are physically taxing, as well as double teams and face-guard situations, yet she adapts and attacks. She is really good in the pick-and-roll and makes plays that simply take courage.
Look for an extremely competitive show-stopping summer out of Chavez. She is averaging 25.7 points, 6.7 assists, and 7.4 rebounds per game. Her offers include: Texas Tech, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Kansas State, Arkansas, Louisville, SMU, TCU and West Virginia.
W/F Jasmine Davidson
Clackamas High School (Ore.)
Standout freshmen often must have strong, mature fundamentals when facing older opponents at the varsity level. Davidson's focus on the minute details have led to her team winning. She averages 22 points, 8.3 rebounds, 4 steals and 2.8 assists and will be as highly sought after as any player in her class.
Upon film review of her high school games, the first thing that is evident is how she moves without the ball on the offensive end. Her L-cuts and V-cuts are sharp and executed well. She sets screens, reads the shape-up and knows how to space accordingly. She is a lefty with a nice pull-up jumper and keeps opponents honest out to the 3-point line. She can create off the dribble with hesitations and a little bit of shake, which allows her to live in the paint and draw fouls.
Defensively, she is well beyond her peers in her instincts, positioning off the ball and on-ball prowess. It is evident that she has been in the gym with some very good teachers of the game. Her recruitment includes Stanford, Oregon, Washington State, UConn, Louisville, Oregon State, Gonzaga, Arizona State, UCLA, Cal and Utah.
G/W Zakiyah Johnson
Sacred Heart Academy (Ky.)
Johnson has that old-school feel to her game in that she is rarely rattled; she stays poised, doesn't play too fast and can outmaneuver her opponents. She can read opposing game plans and finds ways to counter. If there is one word to describe her game, it is smooth.
With a strong frame on the perimeter, she can keep defenders at bay with her fundamental handle and her floor vision. She can play out of the ball screen and is a threat to get to the rim, shoot the 3 or drop off the bounce pass to the roller. She has post-up ability and is good on the glass on both ends.
She is currently averaging 17.3 points, 7.8 rebounds, and 3.3 assists per game. Her long list of offers includes Arizona, Louisville, LSU, Michigan, NC State, Ohio State, Tennessee and UCLA.