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Keep an eye on 2024 6’3 Trenton Sherrill (East Gaston)

Looking back this season, there are quite a few new names that had a tremendous season and deserve a little exposure.  One of those was actually a freshman in 2024 6’3 Trenton Sherrill, as he put up some impressive numbers and continued to impress recently at the Phenom Challenge in Spartanburg. This past season, Sherrill led the charge for East Gaston as he averaged 19.9 points, 7.4...

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Coaching and playing the right way: NLPB TN 15u

Sitting on the sidelines recently at the Phenom Challenge, we got a chance to watch the NLPB TN 15u team in action and we came away impressed.  First off, coach Joe Cassell plays and teaches the right way and in talking to him, he understands the importance in teaching team mentality but loves to compete.  He also teaches and wants his players to know the importance of doing the little things on...

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Bendel’s Best: Phenom Challenge

This past weekend, Phenom Hoops traveled out to the Upward Star Center in Spartanburg, South Carolina for our final event in the month of April. There was expected to be a ton of excitement with an abundance of teams and a variety noteworthy prospects on display. While numerous players were worthy of recognition, this article will take a closer look at some personal favorites from...

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Special K’s Superstars from Phenom Challenge

LeBron Thomas 6’4 Jamari Briggs of Upward Stars Pee Dee 16U was impressive this weekend. He possesses the already translatable physical tools that allow him to stand out immediately when watching him. Jamari is a big guard who utilizes a blend of athleticism and strength to barrel his way to the rim and finish through contact. It is evident that he has made clear strides in his improvement...

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New Names to Add to the List: Rising Bigs from Phenom Challenge

Jamarcus Wilkins The Phenom Challenge was a great event that provided us several new names to the scene, especially some young big’s that will be ones to watch in the coming years. Here though are five players that captured our eyes in how they were able to make their presence known on the court down low. 2023 6’7 Jamarcus Wilkins (Upstate Select): Wilkins was a player that we got to watch...

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POB’s Eye Catchers: Phenom Challenge (Day 2)

2025 Jackson Powers (PSB Cassada): Powers has had a strong performance all weekend long, as the 6’4 big man has carved out space, moved well without the ball, and really been aggressive on the boards on both sides.  Powers shows nice touch and hands for his size, as he softly gets the ball on the rim and finishes regularly. 2024 Bobby Hardison (Carolina Riptide); Hardison may have been one...

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Phenom Challenge Championship: 16u Blue Division

Another weekend of championships was going on all Sunday afternoon, as teams were looking to finish off the event in style and on top. All teams came in to compete but only a few could come away with some hardware. The final championship of the day and we all got a good one. Both teams were very competitive throughout, as Riptide 2023 SC and East Tennessee Kings wanted to finish in style....

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DeAjai ‘s Championship Sunday Standouts

By; DeAjai Dawkins 6’7 2021 Carl Thorpe Jr (Team Swish) I don’t make it an intention, but I have gotten accustomed to the habit of completely investing my interest into the recruitment of a new prospect. This weekend, I was introduced to an unsigned senior who I believe is flying ridiculously below college coach’s radars. Carl Thorpe is a 6’7 forward with incredibly impressive rim protection...

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Phenom Challenge Championship: 16u White Division

Another weekend of championships was going on all Sunday afternoon, as teams were looking to finish off the event in style and on top. All teams came in to compete but only a few could come away with some hardware. Down on Court 1, the Aces 16u and VA Havoc ROA 2023 battled it out to end their fantastic weekend. VA Havoc though came out and made a statement with their game, jumping out quickly...

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Phenom Challenge Championship: 15u Red Division

Another weekend of championships was going on all Sunday afternoon, as teams were looking to finish off the event in style and on top. All teams came in to compete but only a few could come away with some hardware. Back down in the 15u Division, Carolina Riptide 2024 and Upstate Select 2024 wanted to both leave it all on the line, and that they did, as it came down to the final minutes and...

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Phenom Challenge Championship: 16u Red Division

Another weekend of championships was going on all Sunday afternoon, as teams were looking to finish off the event in style and on top. All teams came in to compete but only a few could come away with some hardware. Team Passion Elite and Upstate Select 2023 squared off for a championship at the Phenom Challenge. Two teams battled throughout the first half, with Team Passion holding the narrow...

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Phenom Challenge Championship: 15u White Division

Another weekend of championships was going on all Sunday afternoon, as teams were looking to finish off the event in style and on top. All teams came in to compete but only a few could come away with some hardware. We had another thriller on our hands and our first overtime championship game, and with the first team to get two points wins, anything can go. But overall, this was a back-and-forth...

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Phenom Challenge Championship: 17u Red Division

Another weekend of championships was going on all Sunday afternoon, as teams were looking to finish off the event in style and on top. All teams came in to compete but only a few could come away with some hardware. Heading back in the 17u bracket, Mint Hill Lakers and Virginia Havoc were two of the best teams at the event and they went at it to be crowned champion. Both teams played really well...

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Player Standouts at Day Two of Phenom Challenge

6’0 ’24 Parker Burke (TSB) Although they showcased great balance throughout this contest, Burke was arguably their most vital contributor. He’s a smart, unselfish floor general with a keen playmaking sense and the ability to consistently find quality shots for himself or others. Burke was the youngest player on the roster, but it certainly wasn’t evident. His IQ, pace, and overall patience...

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Phenom Challenge Championship: 17u Blue Division

Another weekend of championships was going on all Sunday afternoon, as teams were looking to finish off the event in style and on top. All teams came in to compete but only a few could come away with some hardware. In the 17u Blue Division, Upward Stars JP and K-9 Elite battled it out on the court for the title. Upward Stars JP used a balanced scoring attack, getting everyone involved and into...

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Phenom Challenge Championship: 14u Division

Another weekend of championships was going on all Sunday afternoon, as teams were looking to finish off the event in style and on top. All teams came in to compete but only a few could come away with some hardware. To start off the championship games, we kicked it off in the 14u Division, as Haywood Hawks and Pro Skills Winston-Salem Cassada battled it out on the court. PSB came out strong early...

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Phenom Challenge Championship: 17u White Division

Another weekend of championships was going on all Sunday afternoon, as teams were looking to finish off the event in style and on top. All teams came in to compete but only a few could come away with some hardware. Another thriller in the 17u Division, as Virginia Havoc Roa Gray and Team Passion Elite as these teams battled it out on the court.  VA Havoc Roa Gray came out strong and used a...

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DeAjai’s Day One Standouts #PhenomChallenge (Part 2)

By: DeAjai Dawkins 6’5 2023 Harrison Poole (Go Hard 16U) Harrison Poole had periods in the game I watched him where he was the most active player on the floor, and other sequences where he seemed to slightly blend in. In the sequences in which he shined, Harrison Poole left no doubt in my mind that he could make these next two years of high school very productive. A long, wiry wing that shows...

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DeAjai’s Day One Standouts #PhenomChallenge (Part 1)

By: DeAjai Dawkins 6’5 2021 Tureon Walker (NC Wildcats 17U) Today was my first time watching Tureon Walker, and it was an initial surprise to see the respect he already had from some of the spectators watching the 8AM game. A senior combo guard, Tureon plays with hints of the composure desired of a standard lead guard at the college level, and shows that he’s capable of scoring the ball at all 3...

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Player Standouts at Phenom Challenge

5’11 ’22 Evan Presnell (Carolina Riptide) Although the Carolina Riptide always seem to shine through their balance, but Presnell definitely stood out among their top performers in their first contest of the day. He’s a smart, tough, heady point guard prospect with excellent creation skills and the ability to set up others, access his lethal pull-up jumper, or finish strong through contact....

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POB’s Eye Catchers: Phenom Challenge (Day 1, Part 2)

2025 Treyvolis Walker (Elite 8 SC): For a player in middle school, he has a very intriguing and smooth game that he brings. He is shifty on the court, can create for himself and for others, and plays with a good motor at his age.  Strong performance from him on Day 1. 2022 LeBron Thomas (FIBA): Thomas has only grown and gotten stronger with his game, while still being that playmaker on the...

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POB’s Eye Catchers: Phenom Challenge (Day 1, Part 1)

2025 Greg Murray (Carolina Riptide 2025): As a young guard, Murray has a natural feel for the game and how to attack off the dribble. He makes savvy plays, always seems to be active and around the ball, and sees the floor really well.  Add on top his ability to score from multiple levels and create off the dribble, Murray is certainly going to be a name to remember. 2025 Jackson Fannon...

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Phenom Challenge Team Listing

Team AgeTeam NameTeam State14UBTB 2025South Carolina14UElite 8 SCSouth Carolina14UHaywood HawksNorth Carolina14UHoopkilpNorth Carolina14UNext Level Elite 2025-JacksonSouth Carolina14UPro Skills – Winston Salem UA – CassadaNorth Carolina14URiptide 2025North Carolina15UCarolina Clutch 15uNorth Carolina15UCarolina Riptide 2024North Carolina15UCeltics South EliteSouth...

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POB’s Stock Risers (Part 3)

It certainly hasn’t been the summer many had hoped but we were able to get a chance to have travel ball this season at Phenom Hoops, with constant action going on in the gyms of South Carolina. With the season winding down for many, let’s start taking a look back at the bigger picture and see which players should see their stock rise after an impressive season. This will be a several part...

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POB’s Summer Stock Risers (Part 2)

It certainly hasn’t been the summer many had hoped but we were able to get a chance to have travel ball this season at Phenom Hoops, with constant action going on in the gyms of South Carolina. With the season winding down for many, let’s start taking a look back at the bigger picture and see which players should see their stock rise after an impressive season. This will be a several part...

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Special K’s Hoops Take: Best of August (Part 3)

This August was a month full of very intriguing talent and potential amongst the abundance of teams and players that attended our events. Talent everywhere from High Major Division 1 to Division 3 level players competed all month long. Of the many players I saw this August, a few players really stood out and either made a name for themselves or showed why they were already highly touted.

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Special K’s Hoops Take: Best of August (Part 2)

This August was a month full of very intriguing talent and potential amongst the abundance of teams and players that attended our events. Talent everywhere from High Major Division 1 to Division 3 level players competed all month long. Of the many players I saw this August, a few players really stood out and either made a name for themselves or showed why they were already highly touted.

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Upward Stars 704: A Well-Oiled Machine

After an extensive down-period, the past month has been full of excitement and opportunities for kids to prove themselves to college coaches. While the recruiting process differs greatly from that of a normal summer, everyone has done their part to make the best of this unique situation. Naturally, high-profile programs haven’t suffered as much as most grassroots programs but offers are still...

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Special K’s Hoops Take: Best of August (Part 1)

This August was a month full of very intriguing talent and potential amongst the abundance of teams and players that attended our events. Talent everywhere from High Major Division 1 to Division 3 level players competed all month long. Of the many players I saw this August, a few players really stood out and either made a name for themselves or showed why they were already highly touted.

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2022 6’1 Walker Andrews earns first two offers from Duquesne and NJIT

2022 6’1 Walker Andrews from Virginia Episcopal high school enjoyed his last two events, one of which was the Phenom Challenge in Rock Hill. Averaging over 21 points per game in each, he certainly grabbed the attention of college coaches with his play and eventually earned his first two offers.

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