by: Ethan Reece
2025 Dane Cassada (PSB Cassada)The score sheet might not have shown much but the scoreboard showed a win and that’s what matters. In a low-scoring defensive-minded matchup, Dane really turned the tables to rally his squad and pull out a hard-fought comeback win in the semis. He got things rolling with his defense and the game started coming to him, driving and dishing and coming up with a clutch finish to seal the game. He kept that flow going into the championship game where he came up with plays every time they needed one, especially with his off-ball cuts for finishes and then hit the game-winning 3 in sudden death OT!
2026 Beckett Coon (Strong Center)Whenever a play was needed, Beckett seemed to come up with something. Small PG but very quick and has no problem getting his shot up with a quick release and shot fakes. Stayed hot all weekend with multiple games hitting 4 threes and matches well with his back-court counterpart Nate Jones where either guy can run the offense and create for others.
2026 Darius Whitner (Team Loaded 919)While the whole roster plays with endless energy and physicality, Darius took it to another level and really ignited by the end of the first half. Ultimate hype man turning up with every little thing he or his teammates did and brought it big time defensively, not afraid to do the dirty work. Was a big part of their success before even mentioning his 5 threes and 24 points that led the way to the Middle School division championship.
2023 Markquan Gilbert (Carolina Clutch)Most people will look at Markquan stepping out on the court and assume he’s a football guy. I was actually surprised to hear he doesn’t play football at all, and to that point is a gifted and smart basketball player. He uses his body to his advantage and knows when to attack, how to finish. Most dangerous getting downhill but has proven he can stop and pull up too while remaining an off-ball threat with his cuts, look for him to be a big piece in Ben L Smith’s system this year.