CoBL Staff (@hooplove215)
The 7th Annual CoBL Interstate Shootout brought 70 teams from Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware to the courts at Friends’ Central and Haverford College this weekend for yet another fantastic weekend of hoops in front of dozens of college coaches, as well as the CoBL staff and other assorted media.
Here’s the CoBL staff’s picks for standouts from Sunday’s action at Friends Central:
Christian Bliss (2024 | George School
George School's Christian Bliss surveys the floor. (Photo: Josh Verlin/CoBL)
Leading the way in two wins on the day, Bliss’s offensive playmaking blended his scoring with facilitating. He got to the rim for some tough layups when he wasn’t creating looks for Kachi Nzeh or kicking it to shooters. He hit a couple trey balls too. Bliss’s biggest impact came at the point of attack on defense. They were down early versus Archbishop Ryan until Bliss began pressuring their ball-handlers creating turnovers. He did the same against Bonner-Prendie when Friars were hanging with them and achieved similar results. After the game, Bliss mentioned a great unofficial visit to Hofstra and plans to take a few more before the season begins.
Alex Cercado (2023 | Bethlehem Catholic)
Cercado’s ability to find teammates stood out in Bethlehem Catholic’s 34-42 loss to Ewing (N.J.). The rising senior carved into the paint at will, consistently drawing fouls, and whenever help came, he made the correct read finding his frontcourt teammates. He finished with 15 points and six assists, and late in the game, he drilled two three-pointers to try and keep his team in the game.
Adam “Budd” Clark (2023 | West Catholic)
In West Catholic’s 40-29 win over Union Catholic (N.J.), Clark took over as the Burrs’ leading scorer, finishing with 11 points. Clark effectively finished at the rim in the contest, highlighted by a transition reverse layup where he kept a defender at bay while finishing the difficult layup. Later in the game, he made a clutch three to give West Catholic an insurmountable lead.
Ife West-Ingram (2023 | Abington Friends)
Abington Friends' Ife West-Ingram dribbles up the floor. (Photo: Josh Verlin/CoBL)
In Abington Friends’ 45-42 win over Cherry Hill East (N.J.) on Sunday morning, Ingram’s athleticism was on full display. The rising senior finished with 14 points doing all of his damage at the rim or the free throw line after drawing contact. He thrived whenever he filled a lane in transition leading to three of his four dunks. Ingram created half-court offense using a tight left-to-right crossover, getting to his strong hand and finishing with physicality at the rim. He was also impactful on the other side of the ball, getting two steals, including a clean rip on an East guard, continuing AFS’ comeback bid.
Kellen Ingram (2024 | Abington)
Without Ingram, Abington would not have beaten Haddonfield 46-42. The 6-4 power forward jump-started Abington’s second-half comeback, his imposing play in the paint helping to erase a 10-point halftime deficit. Ingram scored 13 points, patrolled the paint, intimidated drivers, and blocked shots. He showcased impressive footwork down low and an unwavering effort on the glass. Ingram scored the overtime game-winner as he got fouled at the rim.
Deuce Ketner (2024 | Bonner-Prendergast)
The junior forward scored 11 points in a close contest versus the Hun School. Ketner drove at defenders, forced the foul, and got to the charity stripe. He flashed his athleticism and used various finishes around the rim, including an emphatic one-handed slam in transition that woke up the gym. The 6-7 forward also attacked the boards and recorded two steals, creating easy offense for the Friars. Ketner has offers from Drexel, Albany, and Robert Morris.
Christian Kirkland (2023 | Friends Select)
Kirkland had two dominant performances as the Falcons went 1-1 in his first competitive action since June. In one defensive possession against Life Center, Kirkland had 3 blocks which led to a fastbreak layup. He truly guarded ‘1’ through ‘5’ today, switching onto point guards in PNR and causing havoc. He even stripped the ball from a guard and took it the other way for a jam. In the half court, he knocked the rust off his iso game by attacking the paint from the perimeter and getting to his jumper from the mid-post. Kirkland also cleaned the glass for easy putbacks.
Bonner's Nelson Lamizana, center, goes up for a shot. (Photo: Josh Verlin/CoBL)
Nelson Lamizana (2024 | Bonner-Prendie)
Injuries have kept Lamizana on the sidelines for a good portion of his first two seasons of high school basketball, which is the only reason that the 6-7 forward is still somewhat under-the-radar as he enters his junior year. But in a 15-point outing against the George School, Lamizana showed that he’s certainly a Division I prospect, the combo forward doing everything from protecting the rim with several emphatic swats to stretching the floor to the 3-point arc and putting the ball on the floor in the open court, as well as finishing strong at the bucket.
Kachi Nzeh (2023 | George School)
The Xavier commit was tasked with guarding fellow Division I prospect Thomas Sorber, where he did a good job not allowing the big man to get comfortable. But slowing down opposing big men is a small part of what makes Nzeh’s defensive potential stand out. He also effectively slowed down opposing perimeter players whenever he switched onto them. In George School’s 36-24 win, Nzeh’s offense mainly came from the dunker spot, where he threw down multiple emphatic jams.
Izaiah Pasha (2023 | Cardinal O’Hara)
Pasha is known for his 3-level scoring, which he did a bit of today, but his defense is underrated. He was active at the nail throughout both games before locking in on-ball to seal the wins. His lateral quickness and effort working over screens made it difficult for the opposing guards to create space. Offensively, Izaiah’s made huge strides with his handle. Defenders had trouble staying in front of him in general, but Pasha was most effective playing off-the-catch. His jumper wasn’t falling consistently against Arts High. So he responded in the Salesianum game by driving and cutting to the basket for efficient buckets.
Dan Vessey (2023 | Hun School, N.J.)
The Army commit commanded the Hun Raiders (N.J.) to a victory over Bonner-Prendergast (P.A.). He scored 11 points, nine of which came from behind the arc. Vessey exercised excellent court vision. He dished out five assists. The senior point guard penetrated the paint, forced the defense to collapse, and found open teammates behind the arc and around the basket. He never stopped moving off-ball and consistently placed himself into threatening positions. Vessey provided a sense of calm when Bonner-Prendie pushed Hun to the brink.
Raheem Williams (Union Catholic, N.J. | 2023)
Williams’ jumper was on target against West Catholic. The rising senior was hitting off the catch, off the dribble and with defenders in his face. Williams used excellent off-ball movement to get to his spots. He finished with 17 points, including five three-pointers. The most impressive thing about Williams’ shot-making was how comfortable he was with knocking down shots as defenders closed out; he was unfazed and was a bright spot in Union Catholic’s 40-29 loss.
Christian Barksdale (2023 | Appoquinimink, Del.), Haji Bell (2023 | Appoquinimink, Del.), Aasim Burton (2024 | Cardinal O’Hara), Isaac Cole (2025 | West Catholic), Josh Coulanges (2023 | Cardinal O’Hara), Brady Eagan (2023 | Bonner-Prendie), Josh Fadahunsi (2023 | Cherry Hill East, N.J.), Ian Gross (2023 | Cherry Hill East, N.J.), Jamal Hicks (2024 | Bonner-Prendergast), Jeremiah Lee (2024 | Abington), Jacob Jones (2025 | Cherry Hill East, N.J.), Kyree Latimer (2024 | Constitution), Max Koehler (2023 | Garnet Valley), Matt Morris (2024 | Haddonfield, N.J.), Muhsin Muhammad (2024 | Friends’ Central), Sam Narducci (2024 | Haddonfield, N.J), Chimeziri Okeoma (2023 | Union Catholic, N.J.), Michael Paris (2023 | Archbishop Ryan), Naire Preston (Ewing, N.J | 2023), Kenny Rankin (2023 | Ewing, N.J.), Thomas Sorber (Archbishop Ryan | 2024), Jake Sniras (2025 | Garnet Valley), Amir Speights (2024 | Constitution), Kareem Thomas (2024 | Salesianum, Del.), Darren Williams (Archbishop Ryan | 2024) Symeon Efstahiou (2023 | Hun School, N.J.)
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