Phenom Hoops traveled to Summerfield, North Carolina for a terrific battle between Northwest Guilford and High Point Central. It was a great midseason test for both teams, as it featured phenomenal matchups and a lot of high-level basketball. Northwest entered this contest at 11-2 while High Point Central stood at 7-7. The Vikings have hit their stride and looked increasingly tough as the season has progressed, hanging their hat on the play of Christian Hampton and Dean Reiber. Meanwhile, High Point Central has played exclusively through Dhieu Deing and have fared quite well thus far.
This contest opened with Northwest establishing their dominance in the half-court and then gradually turning it into an up-and-down game. They closed the first quarter with a 20-7 lead and then maintained quality separation for the remainder of the game. It was a sloppy first half for both teams, featuring a ton of turnovers and overall errant play. High Point Central trailed 38-24 at the end of the half. The second half was more intense and competitive in virtually every facet of the game, even as the pace picked up. The Vikings found themselves with a comfortable cushion after the third quarter and continued to control their twenty-point lead until the final buzzer, winning 73-50 over the Bison of High Point Central.
6’1 ’20 Christian Hampton
We’ve seen the point guard an abundance of times this season, but this was arguably his best all-around showing to date. He isn’t looking to be friendly on the court and truly possesses that killer instinct on both ends of the floor. Hampton is shooting the ball at a career rate from beyond the arc while still establishing himself as a dominant interior force. He sets the tone defensively and shows a desire to really disrupt his assignment in any possible way. Hampton is incredibly bouncy on both ends of the floor and is a constant threat for chasedown blocks. He was exceptional in every area of this game and should be seriously recruited by mid-major programs going forward. Final stats: 23 points, 4 rebounds, 9 assists, 3 steals, and 2 blocks.
6’9 ’20 Dean Reiber
The big man rebounded well on both sides of the ball throughout this contest, but took his time to establish himself as a scorer and eventually started making his presence consistently felt on offense. He knocked down shots from all levels and was able to actively toggle between playing inside and along the perimeter—which we’ve become accustomed to at this point. Reiber outplayed whoever was placed in front of him and continues to look ready for the next level with each passing day. Final stats: 11 points, 9 rebounds, 2 steals, and 2 blocks.
6’3 ’20 Brendan Thomas
The biggest energy performance from this showing was probably Thomas, who offered a terrific two-way presence from start to finish. He harassed opposing ball-handlers and jumped passing lanes with great regularity, forcing multiple steals and pushing the pace in transition. Thomas attacked the rim whenever possible and got to the line at an effective rate. Final stats: 12 points, 5 assists, and 6 steals.
High Point Central:
6’4 ’19 Dhieu Deing
The wing prospect remained High Point Central’s most reliable all-around presence in this contest. He looked for his shot early and often, and was able to get going in the second half. That being said, Deing was more impactful on defense than offense, where he was able to highlight his speed and anticipation skills. Final stats: 11 points, 7 rebounds, 2 assists, and 5 steals.
6’9 ’20 Kuluel Mading
The long-bodied big man struggled with foul trouble in the first half, but was arguably the best rebounder on either team. He’s super thin, but displays a phenomenal understanding of how to properly utilize his length, especially on defense. Mading has a chance to be special as he physically develops and gains more playing experience. Final stats: 4 points and 12 rebounds