Open Gym Tour: Oak Hill vs. Hargrave Post Grad
Phenom Hoop Report travelled to picturesque Surry Central High School located in the heart of the North Carolina wine industry. With a cool crisp nip in the air, it’s the start of another high school basketball season and what better way to start it off with the annual scrimmage game between Oak Hill Academy and Hargrave Post Grad. While the game is called a “scrimmage game,” don’t let that fool you into thinking this is just an ordinary scrimmage. We’re talking about the best high school basketball program in the country and one of the best post grad programs. Both programs have a storied past and a bevy of players that have played at the highest level and this year is no exception.
The” scrimmage game” is actually two halves or games within themselves, with each half lasting 20 minutes. The score is reset to zero at the half and allows which team to claim a win within the scrimmage itself. Legendary coach Steve Smith is entering his 34th season at Oak Hill and has complied an unprecedented 1118-72 record and has won nine national high school championships. Year after year, Oak Hill is competing for the national championship and Oak Hill is locked and loaded for chasing another championship banner.
The 2018-19 Oak Hill team may just be Coach Smith’s best team since the 2012 team that went 44-0 and won its eight national championship. In our opinion, this team has better overall talent and has three potential first round NBA prospects on the roster. (Cole Anthony, Kofi Cockburn, and Cam Thomas.) Oak Hill cruised out to a 47-9 lead in the first half and eventually won the first half by the score of 69-41. The second half was more competitive with Oak Hill winning 62-50 and a final score of 131-91. Now, let’s get started with the impact players of the game.
6’3 2019 Cole Anthony (Oak Hill Academy)
Make no mistake about it, Cole Anthony is a very special player. Most national publications have Anthony in the top three prospects nationally and some have him labelled as the top prospect overall. Anthony combines a unique blend of size, strength, athleticism and a matching skill set. He has advanced ball handling skills with super quick “dribble speed” with the ball, not to mention impeccable court vision. Anthony can score from all three levels. He has outstanding range. For the night, Anthony finished with 23 points, 16 assists, and seven rebounds. He went 6-7 from the floor and 3-7 from the 3-point line. Simply put, Anthony makes his teammates better and, in our opinion, a future lottery pick in the NBA. He gets where he wants when he wants!
6’11 2019 Kofi Cockburn (Oak Hill Academy)
Kofi Cockburn is a mountain of a man and in our opinion is still vastly underrated nationally and should be in the conversation as a potential McDonald All American prospect. We’re talking about a “BIG” with passer friendly hands, nifty footwork in the post, and has good mobility in the paint. In our opinion Cockburn is more skilled offensively than David McCormack who was considered the top big last year. Cockburn finished with 23 points, 13 rebounds, two assists, and two block shots. Cockburn went 8-12 from the floor, but more importantly went a perfect 7-7 from the free throw line. You have to love a “big” who can knock down free throws.
6’3 2020 Cam Thomas (Oak Hill Academy)
Scoring comes easy, really easy to Cam Thomas. As a matter of fact, he may be one of the most efficient scorers in the 2020 class. The silky-smooth wing is instant offense and can score from all three levels. He has a quick shooting release and an unbelievable first step off the dribble and more importantly he doesn’t need many dribbles to create his own shot. For the night, Thomas finished with a game high 33 points going 10-13 from the floor, 3-8 from the 3-point line and a perfect 4-4 from the free throw line.
6’9 2019 Chandler Lawson (Oak Hill Academy)
With Anthony, Cockburn and Thomas, getting additional publicity may be a little difficult, but don’t forget about the length and play of Lawson. While he could be a tad more aggressive at times, his enormous wingspan is going to create havoc on the defensive end of the court. For the night, Lawson finished with 11 points, five rebounds, four assists, two blocks, two assists, but more importantly eight deflections. While these may be “modest” numbers for the likes of Anthony, Cockburn and Thomas, Lawson quietly goes about his business and puts his fingerprints on all aspects of the game.
6’7 2019 BJ Mack (Oak Hill Academy)
Simply put, BJ Mack is going to be rock steady and the game against Hargrave was no exception. He finished with 11 points going 2-3 from the floor, 2-2 from the 3-point line and 4-5 from the free throw line, not to mention corralling eight rebounds. Mack won’t be the flashiest player on the court, but will always be reliable and efficient. You know what you’re getting with BJ Mack every night.
6’8 Post Grad Mickey Pearson (Hargrave Military)
It was a solid all-around workmanlike performance by Mikey Pearson. We really like his aggressive and relentless approach to the game. He was able to score from the perimeter and battled on the boards. He has excellent mobility and fluidness and impressed us with his tenacity. Pearson finished with 11 points, four rebounds and two steals. Person was previously committed to the University of St. Louis but opted for a year of post grad. Look for high majors to get involved with the versatile and intriguing wing forward.
6’2 2019 Justin Webster (Hargrave Military)
Justin Webster may have been Hargrave’s most consistent player of the game. He scored a game high 20 points with 10 coming in each half. Webster provided perimeter scoring and knocked down 3-pointers and sporting a nifty midrange pull up jumper. We really liked his poise and maturity throughout the game.Webster also collected four rebounds and dished out two assists. Shooters translate at all levels and Webster showcased the ability to score off the catch or off the dribble.
6’1 Post Grad Giovanni Santigo (Hargrave Military)
Simply put, Giovanni Santigo is a tough as nails competitor. Going head to head against Cole Anthony, Santiago didn’t back down from the challenge. Giovanni played extremely hard on both ends of the court and demonstrated on court leadership throughout the game. Santigo finished with 16 points and dished out five assists. The southpaw point guard will give you maximum effort and energy 100% of the time.
- Special thanks to Coach Taylor Conn (Oak Hill Academy) of providing official stats for Oak Hill