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2024 Philly Live II: Recruiting Notebook (Pt. 6)

07/05/2024, 9:30am EDT
By CoBL Staff

CoBL Staff (@hooplove215)

The second session of Philly Live 2024 brought over 220 boys teams to the City of Brotherly Love from all over the region — Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware were well-represented, but teams from all over the Eastern seaboard came up to play in front of hundreds of college coaches.

CoBL’s writers spent the weekend at both Jefferson University and the Philadelphia Youth Basketball ‘6th Man’ Center catching up with local teams and prospects of note. Here’s a notebook featuring recruiting updates on several area prospects:

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(Ed. Note: Links to all of our 2024 Philly Live I content can be found at the bottom of this article)

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Kendall Bratten (2025 | Phil-Mont Christian Academy)

Bratten spent the end of last season the last place he’d ever hoped to.


Phil-Mont Christian (Pa.) 2025 F Kendall Bratten. (Photo: Andrew Robinson/CoBL)

The 6-foot-5 forward fractured two bones in his ankle on Feb. 1, putting him on crutches for two weeks and a boot through the end of the season, which concluded in the second round of the PIAA Class A tournament. While it was undeniably frustrating, Bratten said he was grateful to have avoided surgery, neither bone break severe enough to require any pins, screws or plates.

“That was frustrating, I knew I could have been a big help to the states run,” Bratten said. “I think if I had been able to play we could have gone at least as far as we did the year before (the Class A quartefinals) but I still trusted my teammates and we made a good run.”

Bratten, who was averaging close to 20 points per game before his injury, has been a mainstay in Phil-Mont coach Glenn Dolton’s lineup the past few seasons. He and rising senior Jameer Zachary look to be the leaders for a Falcons team that’s usually a factor in the Bicentennial Athletic League and contending for district titles.

While Bratten is glad to be back on the court, he knows he still has some room yet to go before he feels fully back.

“My conditioning’s not where it needs to be, I’m getting tired easily but it’s great to be back with the guys,” Bratten said. “I’m not going to complain about being able to play basketball again.”

Although he may not be at full speed, Bratten showed flashes of what he can do on Friday against Rancocas Valley Regional. His best play was on the defensive end, coming from inside the arc to swat away a three-point attempt while the forward also used his length well offensively to get shots up over defenders.

Bratten operated mainly in the high post and around the rim but he’s got a solid midrange shot. He also brought the ball up the floor quite a bit, something he’s been working at quite a bit after playing almost mainly off the ball his first three seasons.

“Ball-handling’s the main thing, my first couple years I really didn’t have a handle,” Bratten said. “I’ve gotten a little better with pull-up jump shots and I’m working on the three.”

Bratten does not play travel basketball, so Phil-Mont is his sole focus. 

“Team chemistry, learning to share the ball and not dribbling as much,” Bratten said. “Our coach is always getting on us not to try and break your man down, instead pass the ball and that’s where the drives are where you can dribble.”

Bratten is hoping to play at the next level, it’ll be a matter of showing what he can do as a senior while getting his game legs back. He said Penn State Harrisburg has been in contact and had been planning to catch a game at Philly Live and overall would be open to anything that comes his way.

“If the opportunity presents itself, I’m going to take it,” Bratten said. “I’ll try my best and hopefully I can impress some scouts.” — Andrew Robinson

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Jake Pukszyn (2026 | Liberty)

Pukszyn has the vision.


Liberty High School (Pa.) 2026 G Jake Pukszyn. (Photo: Andrew Robinson/CoBL)

A 6-foot-2 point guard, Pukszyn is entering what will be his third season as a starter for Bethlehem’s Liberty High School. The Hurricanes have been a very good team the first two years, reaching back-to-back District 11 title games but also coming up short both times.

“This is my first year as an upperclassman, but myself and the other juniors, we’ve been around it,” Pukszyn said. “We’re trying to get back to another district championship, we have to get back and win it.”

Pukszyn’s greatest strength on the court is his passing. His size not only allows him to see the whole floor well, he’s strong enough to keep defenders at bay while either driving to the rim for a late kick-out or finding an open teammate.

Last season, he became just the second player in the last 18 years to tally a 10-assist game for the Hurricanes. He can make the passes, but it’s just as much in the way the ball gets there, usually right to a spot where a shooter can put it right up.

“I’ve been around the game since I was young, I feel like I’ve always been able to see things on the court, I watch a lot of film so I think it comes from that,” Pukszyn said. “I have to make the right plays for the group.”

Something Pukszyn firmly believes is that the best shooting teams are the best passing teams, so his objective is to get his guys the ball where they can get their best shots. He can shoot it well himself from the perimeter but can also turn some of those drives into finishes and is a sharp cutter off the ball once he gives it up.

“I definitely tried to get better as an overall player,” Pukszyn said. “Previously, I did some things well but other things not well so I just wanted to be consistent as a player.”

Pukszyn is also an emerging talent in football, where he was a first team All-EPC South receiver last fall and also plays defense in the secondary.

The rising junior, who is playing up a year with PA Coaltion’s 17U team this summer, said he doesn’t have a preference between basketball or football. He’s been drawing interest in both, Pukszyn - an honors student - mentioned Columbia as the most recent to reach out on the hoops side but no hard offers yet, so he’s going to play it out and see which avenue works out best.

“I’m excited about both our teams,” Pukszyn said. “We were pretty young last year but we got a lot older through experience for this next year. I’m just trying to win a championship.” — Andrew Robinson

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Kyle Dixon (2026 | Morris Catholic)

Dixon is still searching for an offer after an eye-opening all-around performance.

The 6-2 combo guard electrified his team in a 66-46 win against the Maret School (Md.) on Saturday. Dixon finished with a game-high 18 points, and while he was the highest scorer, his impact was felt everywhere. 

He had multiple steals on the defensive end and turned most of them into buckets on the offensive side; Dixon also showed his playmaking ability, he can play both the ‘1’ and the ‘2’ but he seemed very comfortable running the show on Saturday. He has a great pace to his game, constantly changing speed and lulling defenders to sleep; that allows him to attack the rim at an efficient level and put his teammates in easy scoring positions. 

With all that being said, no schools have made a move on the savvy guard. Dixon claimed interest thus far from Seton Hall, Drexel and Bryant.

Last season was a breakout year for Dixon and Morris Catholic. They had an outstanding regular season, finishing the year with a record of 26-3, earning the No. 1 seed and a bye in the Morris county tournament. In their first game of the tournament Dixon and company exploded, beating Montville 94-47, before being upset by No. 9 seed Chatham, 55-50.

“This (upcoming) season we're going to win,” Dixon said. “The goal is to make a run for county’s and make a run for states.” 

Dixon’s mind is now focused on AAU, where he plays for a Hilltoppers team based in New Jersey. His team only had one session so far and the next one coming in July, where they will be heading to Georgia to compete against the Under Armour Rise circuit.

Once the AAU season is over Dixon will have to wait a little while to get back on the hardwood, the 6-2 guard is heading to the field, joining Morris Catholic’s football team. Dixon will be playing wide receiver and cornerback with a Crusaders team that went winless a year ago. Although it might be chaotic for Dixon to join the football team as a junior, he sees the turf being able to help his growth on the court. 

“Basketball is [still] my main sport,” he said. “This summer I’ve been doing conditioning and working out, I need to get stronger. The purpose of playing football is to get faster and stronger.” — Kevin Gamlin

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Quick Hits

— Zyion Chase (2026 | St. John’s College, D.C.) is one of the more versatile 2026s we watched these last two weekends. The 6-foot-6 forward has the strength to battle down low with forwards and centers but also the athleticism and shooting touch to be effective on the outside as well. Chase showed this versatility in a rather convincing win over a talented Archbishop Caroll team. He scored 18 points to go along with 5 rebounds while also knocking down two three pointers. He has received four division I offers thus far from Towson, San Diego, Ualbany, and Bryant. However, several others such as Hampton, Nicholls State, UMBC, Murray State, and Virginia Tech have begun contacting the four-star prospect. 

— St. John’s College (D.C.) was one of the deepest, most impressive teams at Philly Live this weekend. But a clear standout amongst all this talent was Devin Toatley (2026). The 5-foot-11 shifty guard showed an unbelievably quick first step past defenders with a tight handle and an ability to see the entire floor. The DMV native filled up the stat sheet recording 12 points, 6 rebounds, and 4 assists in a Saturday afternoon battle with a PCL contender in Father Judge. Toatley just recently received his first Division I offer from Bethune-Cookman, but has recently heard from Albany, Towson, Radford, and San Diego.

— Upper Dublin’s Ryan Mulroy continues to draw steady interest from Division II programs and a handful of high-academic Division I programs. Mulroy said Cornell has been the latest entry to the mix, the staff contacting UD coach Derek Brooks and sitting courtside Sunday. The athletic 6-foot-3 wing, who wants to become a teacher and is looking for a strong academic fit, said Lock Haven has also remained a strong relationship as he heads into the final weeks of the summer playing with his NJ Shoreshots Rio squad.


D-I Coverage:

HS Coverage:

Recruiting News:

Tag(s): Home  High School  Boys HS  Bicentennial League (B)  Phil-Mont Christian  Catholic League (B)  Neumann-Goretti