Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
Coaches Flock to See St. Anthony, Gill St. Bernard’s
By Alex Kline
SOUTH ORANGE, N.J. — One by one, the college coaches flocked into Walsh Gym Sunday afternoon to watch the much anticipated showdown between St. Anthony and Gill St. Bernard’s in the Hoop Group Tip-Off Showcase.
St. John’s head coach Steve Lavin arrived with assistants Tony Chiles and Rico Hines to watch St. Anthony junior Kyle Anderson and Gill St. Bernard’s sophomore Jaren Sina. Kevin Willard and the entire Seton Hall coaching staff were there to watch the duo as well. Rutgers coach Mike Rice and associate head coach David Cox were on hand to see the young stars, as well as incoming freshman point guard Myles Mack of St. Anthony.
Georgetown assistant Mike Brennan, UMass coach Derek Kellogg, La Salle coach Dr. John Giannni and Cincinnati assistant Darren Savino were in attendance, too.
In the end, Anderson and Mack led Bob Hurley’s team to a 62-50 victory, career win No. 986 for the Hall of Fame coach.
Anderson and Sina were named game MVPs.
The 6-foot-8 Anderson, a top five junior in the country, finished with 23 points on 7 of 9 shooting and 10 rebounds.
The 6-1 Sina tallied 22 points, hitting 6 of 12 from beyond the arc, and 5 assists to lead the Knights. As a result, he landed scholarship offers from Cincinnati and Rhode Island to go with offers from Rutgers, Seton Hall, St. John’s, Alabama, James Madison and La Salle.
Mack added 17 points for the Friars (2-0).
Alex Mitola added 19 points for Gill St. Bernard’s on 5 of 9 from beyond the arc.
The teams traded baskets throughout the first quarter and Gill took a 17-16 lead after one quarter. As the second quarter came, the two continued to trade baskets as there were three ties and nine lead changes during the first half. St. Anthony took a five point lead into halftime.
With Gill’s biggest player, 6-foot-6 Dominic Hoffman, in foul trouble in the second half, St. Anthony took advantage.
Although St. Anthony had no answers for the hot shooting of Sina and Mitola in the first half, things began to slow down in the second. The Friars took a 51-40 lead into the final quarter.
St. Anthony scored 19 of their 62 points from the free throw line, while the Knights got just one point at the stripe.
“In the first and second quarter, we weren’t getting over their screens quick enough,” Mack said. “That led to their spot up shooting. Before the second half, coach talked to us and told we had to get over those screens and play good defense.”
The Friars will face Jackson Memorial (NJ) on Wednesday. Gill St. Bernard’s (1-1) will take on Franklin (NJ) on Tuesday.
“I want St. Anthony in states,” Hoffman said. His teammates, Mitola and Sina, shook their head in agreement.
This one is far from over.
**Check out the video interview with Kyle Anderson here.
On the prep circuit, CJEOTO Academy won the CJEOTO Prep Classic played at Hoop Group headquarters by defeating Adelphi Prep, 89-54, on Friday and then downing Brittain (N.C.) Academy, 98-67, on Saturday afternoon. Brooklyn native Phil Taylor was named MVP after dropping 42 points in the championship game...NIA Prep, ranked No. 6 nationally, won two games at the Bridgewater (Va.) College Prep tournament. On Friday, NIA downed Fishburne Military, 79-68, and on Saturday, the Newark school beat Massanutten, 104-76. NIA faces Andre Drummond and St. Thomas More Tuesday.
Adam Zagoria is a Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. A contributor to The New York Times and SportsNet New York (SNY), he is also the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker. His articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. He also won an Emmy award for his work on the SNY mini-documentary on Syracuse guard Tyus Battle.
A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013.
He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.