Des Moines, IA: Saying it’s hot in Des Moines, IA is an understatement. There was 100-degree weather for all four days at Nike TOC Session III. And in the gym? It was even hotter. You could tell kids had found their legs coming out of the “COVID BREAK.” Teams looked a little sharper, and the player's shots were a bit more crisp. LBI enjoyed getting eyes on some new prospects while seeing the development of others. Here are a few prospects we expect to move the hype needle with their performances.
Devin “Pooter” Hagemann 2024 | Michigan Crossover 15U
Against a fellow and rival EYBL team, the intensity was high, until pooter decided enough was enough. She single-handedly forced the team to get out of man to man and revert back to a zone to try and contain her. She drove past defender after defender, finishing pretty much everything in site. The nail in the coffin for her opponents, however, was her sticky defense. Her pesky, where you are going style, was too much for her foes to handle today. Pooter definitely.
McKayla Miller 2022 | Gameball 16U
I’ve seen Miller play once before, she played very well then, and didn’t disappoint today either. When her team was struggling for points and momentum, Miller came through big time for her team. She managed to end quite a drought and go on a nice run herself withdrawing some contact and converting from the charity stripe. She was able to create her own shot when things seemed to break down for her team in the half-court as well. Miller showed a lovely poise with the ball in her hands, never looking rattle or bothered by the score or the defender.
Olivia Olson 2024 | Minnesota Fury 2024 UAA
I knew Olson was going to be a problem when I sat down and watched her torch the nets in warm-ups. With superb length and size, she was able to force a turnover quickly from her team's full-court pressure and finish with a defender hit on her tail. She turned the heat up and never dialed it down. She hit pull-ups in transition, and ones from steals, reverse layups oh, and don’t forget some tip-ins for good measure. Olson was absolutely head and shoulders above the rest today.
Aniya Webb 2022 | KC Running Angel 16U SSB
At some point, it seemed like the lines on the court indicating where the three-point line was meant nothing to 12. She was within shooting range pretty much anywhere on that court. Sometimes when an athlete extends her range, the form may suffer, but that wasn’t the case with 12. Her mechanics stayed the same, and it never looked forced. 12, wasn’t only just a long bomb threat, she managed to get out in front of the pack in transition, take her man off the bounce and crash the offensive boards as well.
Mila Reynolds 2022 | Michigan Crossover 17U EYBL
Mila woke up on the second day of this Tournament of Champions weekend, ready for business. She opened the day up with quite a show. The University of Maryland commit in just her first season on the 17u circuit, showed off a plethora of skill this morning with numerous buckets in the paint. She was effective in isolation situations on the perimeter ending with points for her team, many trips to the free-throw line, and some deep bombs from behind the arc to top it off. The oldest of the Reynolds sisters did not disappoint on the defensive end either. She beat up multiple shots into adjacent courts, contested and protected the rim nicely, and made a living on the boards as well.
Alix Stuart 2021 | CBC 2021
Alix impacted a very competitive game vs. Michigan Crossover with her length and ability to finish. The 6’6” center just arrived in the U.S. one month ago and will be a highly sought after prospect because of her ability to shoot a high jump shot and compete on the interior. LBI will be looking forward to her development and recruitment to skyrocket.
Mahli Abdouch 2024 | South Dakota Attack 14U
It didn’t take long for Abdouch to make an immediate impact on the game bright and early this morning on the third day of action in Iowa. This budding point guard was scrappy and tenacious on the defensive end, earning her many deflections and several steals for her team. #5 did a phenomenal job of attacking the gaps of the zone and finishing at the rim or finding another talented teammate.
Alex Pirog 2022 | CBC UAA 17
Alex Pirog was tough to handle. Her ability to rebound of position when crashing the boards was instrumental in her morning win. She also works well in the paint with her back to the basket, showing the ability to finish over either shoulder. Look for Pirog to continue to make an impact on the travel circuit.
Kamorea Arnold Midwest Elite 2023 | 16U EYBL
The number one point guard prospect in the state of Wisconsin is honing her skill for Midwest Elite’s top team. She is the point guard’s point guard as she has elite court vision, ability to handle the ball, and an ability to finish around the rim with multiple angles. She has good strength and size, which allows her to get to contact and find herself at the free-throw line. Arnold enables the game to come to her but possesses the ability to put her will on the defense. Look for Arnold to finish in the top ten nationally in the 2023 class.
Emma Miller 2022 | Minnesota Fury UAA
Emma Miller is Morgan Williams (Mississippi State) of grassroots basketball. She has an elite motor and really understands how to facilitate the offense. She has a high major skill set and knows her way around the court. She has elite decision-making skills, and that, coupled with the ability to knock down the open three, makes her a good prospect for the next level.
Damiya “Dee Dee” Hagemann 2021 | Michigan Crossover 17U EYBL
Dee Dee Hageman always looks like she’s having fun. One could argue, there wasn’t a better point guard in the building. All week she showed off her improved three-point shot, shooting with range and confidence. Her ability to push the tempo and change the pace of the game is elite. This point guards electrifying style of play is going to be missed on the travel circuit for sure. She’s down to her final seven: Ole Miss, Louisville, Mississippi State, Florida State, Michigan State, Kentucky, and Clemson. She will be a game-changing point guard for one of those programs.
Katie Vasecka 2024 | Minnesota Fury 2024 UAA
Katie Vasecka stepped up to the challenge big time today with one of her teammates down with an unforeseen injury. She had no problem with carrying the weight of scoring, rebounding and protecting the rim for her team this morning. Twenty-three drove relentlessly to the rack drawing contact or converting timely baskets. This lengthy guard wasn’t easy to find either; she drove from the top of the key, put back offensive rebounds, and snuck out to the three-point line and drained long bombs as well. Her fight was refreshing to watch as she kept her foot on the gas, finishing with a game-high 26 points and a huge win.
Sydney Harris 2022 | Midwest Elite 16U Weibel
What a way to start a game off against a traditional half-court zone-go 3 for three from behind the arc. After one miss, she lined another one up and drained it from deep again. Although shooting might be her best quality, it’s definitely not her only attribute. While being smashed a bit after hitting four triples in the first half alone, Harris managed to drive and finish with quite the crafty spin move around the help defense.
Tootie Cade 2023 | Minnesota Elite 2023
Cade has the confidence in her three-point shot was ridiculous to witness. Even with a body in front and a hand up, she pulled the trigger and most of the time, knocked it down. When the defense caught on and closed out tight, she did a great job of using her strength to muscle her way to the basket for some easy points. Eleven also got out quick and hard in transition, keeping a fast tempo for her team to finish some easy layups.
Tkiyah Nelson 2023 | Missouri Phenom 15U
Some players without a doubt pass what I like to call, “the eye test.” Nelson doesn’t just look the part; however, she absolutely has the game to go with it. She showed off a silky smooth handle in pick and roll situations along with some great passing to her rolling bigs. Her three-point shot looked so effortless at times, sprinting the baseline and letting it ride with a quick trigger. She has an explosive first step that allowed her to dominate on dribble penetration drives. On the defensive end, Nelson, was just as effective, locking up everyone that stood in front of her. Her aggressive play in passing lanes gave her team a couple of much-needed buckets as well.
Laura Hauge 2024 | North Tartan
Laura Hauge can go! She has a great feel for the game at such a young age. On Sunday, she was on fire. Hauge scored at will, from everywhere. She literally and figuratively played head and shoulders above the rest.
Maryum Dauda 2021 | MO Phenom EYBL (Baylor)
At 6’5” and very long, Dauda personifies versatility on both ends of the court. She protected the rim without getting in foul trouble and was a great asset for her team in this way. She owns the paint with rebounding and the ability to intimidate. I love that she leads the break at times without overdoing it. I also love her jump shot, which she can shoot facing up and turning around quickly after the post feed. Big time get for Baylor.
Sydney Hendrix 2023 | MI Crossover 15U
Sydney is relentless attacking the basket and on the boards. She’s a tough matchup because she never stops, which allows her to dominate on the offensive glass and get 50/50 balls. All week, she got her team extra possessions and muscle points. Sydney was an integral part in keeping every game competitive for MI Crossover.
Kailee Davis 2021 | MI Crossover 17U EYBL
Kailee Davis is clutch. Like super clutch. She shot the ball well from 3 this weekend. Her shot chart would have green circles for makes from all over the court. But when her team needed her most vs. FBC National 2021, Davis made a long 3, in rhythm, over a 6’2” defender to tie the game in regulation. Then, she sealed the deal on a steal and layup to win it in overtime. Clutch!
Jaelyn Glenn 2021 | KC Run GMC (Kansas State)
Just walking from one court to the other, a very long-armed ball handler was leading the break and made a great pass to a streaking big. I tried to keep going, just minding my own business, but that same player got another basket off the dribble and looked so fluid. I stopped to watch the rest of the game to see her make a few more big shots for her team. Glad I stopped to watch Jaelyn Glenn. What a treat.