Last night, Phenom Hoops tuned in online for the Liberty Heights versus The Burlington School game. The game featured two very talented teams and two coaches who do an extremely good job with their programs.
The game started off as one would expect. Kuluel Mading knocked down a three-pointer to put TBS on the board first. Then Jonas Aidoo answered on the other end for Liberty Heights with an and-one. The point guard battle between Jamarii Thomas (TBS) and Elijah Jamison (Liberty Heights) was as good as anticipated. Both players are known to be big-time competitors who make a living getting into the paint, making plays for themselves and their teammates. It was great to see that both had big games for their teams.
The first half went back and forth and was tied going into halftime at 26-26. Jamarii Thomas (TBS) did a great job in the 1st half of setting the tone on the defensive end. As a point guard on the defensive end, it is your job to set the tone. Thomas did just that. He forced steals and rebounded the ball. Offensively, he got into the paint and drew fouls. He also knocked down a three-pointer behind the double drag at the top of the key, showing that he’s more than capable of knocking down the perimeter shot.
Elijah Jamison and Jonas Aidoo combined for 16 of Liberty Heights’ 26 first-half points. Jamison was filling the stat sheet, doing a little bit of everything for his team. He scored efficiently, rebounded the ball, and made the right plays for his team. Aidoo made plays around the basket, finishing with either hand and cleaned up everything on the glass.
The third quarter, again was close as both teams answered one another. The momentum of the game shifted as Elijah Jamison hit a half-court shot on the buzzer putting Liberty Heights up 45-39 going into the fourth.
In the fourth quarter, Liberty Heights began to pull away. Ultimately winning 68-53.
Liberty Heights final stat leaders:
Elijah Jamison – 22 points, 7 assists, 5 rebounds
Jonas Aidoo – 19 points, 14 rebounds, 1 block
PJ Edwards – 11 points, 3 rebounds, 2 assists
The Burlington School final stat leaders:
Jamarii Thomas – 26 points, 4 steals, 3 rebounds
Kobe George – 6 points, 4 rebounds, 2 assists
Player of the Game – Elijah Jamison (2022)
Elijah Jamison has made a tremendous stride in his game as a floor general over the past few months. He has always been able to get into the paint and finish through contact. But what has impressed me the most recently has been his poise and play against pressure. Jamison is playing under control and taking care of the basketball. He is getting into the teeth of the defense and making the right play, whether it is scoring himself or finding the open man for a drop-off, lob, or a kick-out to a shooter. One play in the fourth quarter really stuck out to me. Jamison got into the paint, played off two feet, and found Aidoo for the drop-off dunk. So many good things happen when guards stop off two feet in the lane and are under control. In addition, Jamison shot the ball well from the perimeter, making three three-pointers not including the half court shot. He has continued to improve this area of his game. When he’s consistently knocking down shots from three, it opens the rest of his game.