The grassroots basketball scene continues to be one of the most exciting settings to see prospects perform, as everything, good and bad, is on full display. However, there are numerous teams that don’t necessarily check all the boxes but still consistently outplay one opponent after another. Team Swish is an excellent representative for this notion, as they don’t really need a seven-footer or powerful athletes to still shine. It should probably be somewhat expected, since Lee Scruggs is their coach and does an impeccable job of piecing together rosters that can win games and appeal to college programs. This group is better in reality than their on-paper makeup would imply, so let’s take a closer look…
Though they are an incredibly balanced team, it’s pretty easy to see how 5’10 ’21 Kabe Ellis stands out as a leader. He’s so electric with the ball in his hands, both as a scorer and playmaker, and truly plays bigger than his size would imply in all facets of the game. Ellis is tough, gritty, and extremely intelligent, which is especially evident in the way he runs a team. Between his quickness and craftiness, he’s able to get downhill and touch the paint whenever he desires—where he can finish or reliably manipulate the defense to setup others. Ellis is a quality defender with the ability to mirror his assignment and regularly force turnovers. There should be a lot of programs vying for his services, as Ellis could be an asset for a variety of programs at the next level.
Joining Ellis in the backcourt, the duo of 6’2 ’21 John Tastinger and 5’10 ’22 Reid Carrier really complement each other quite well. Tastinger is another well-rounded guard with little to no real weaknesses within his skillset. He’s smart, tough, and able to make a lasting impact on both sides of the ball. Tastinger scores from multiple levels but also shows a great playmaking sense and willingness to do the dirty work as a defender and rebounder. Meanwhile, Carrier is the youngest prospect on this team but still has an identity that seamlessly meshes with this group. He’s a capable secondary playmaker that always seems to find his way into scoring opportunities. Carrier is a nice spot-up threat with the ability to attack off the bounce or make his presence felt in transition. Both guys should earn opportunities to play in the collegiate ranks.
Guys like 5’10 ’21 Alex Taylor and 6’1 ’21 Abram Abling also shined within their roles on this team. Taylor is tough as nails, and it’s apparent on every single possession. He plays so unbelievably hard but also has the control and intensity to overwhelm opponents in a variety of ways. Taylor is a phenomenal defender with obvious toughness and the ability to play bigger than his size on both ends of the floor. He’s a terrific rebounder and defender that knows how to offer a nonstop motor and pesky presence. Taylor forces turnovers, makes positive plays with the ball in his hands, and simply stands out as someone that players and coaches should want to enter battle alongside. On the other hand, Abling serves as the primary glue-guy and utility player for this group. He does a little bit of everything, from defending and rebounding to cutting and scoring. Abling’s low-maintenance role is a massive part of his appeal, as he’s able to naturally make his mark within various statistical categories during each contest. He plays hard, smart, unselfish, and knows how to maximize his role on both ends of the floor.
Rounding out the roster, 6’0 ’21 Spencer Cable and 6’0 ’21 Kolby Moss are as valuable as anyone to Team Swish’s overall identity. Cable is easily one of their more reliable shooters and overall spot-up threats, but also understands how to contain his assignment defensively. He a solid cutter that moves well without the ball and displays patience on offense. However, Moss is another guy with the ability to simply fill in the gaps on either end of the floor. He makes plays without necessarily needing to be a focal point or having the ball in his hands. Moss is a well-rounded player that can pass, shoot, and defend very effectively within the team structure.