No Shadow of a Doubt in this One
Phoenix Shadow Mountain (AZ) 85 Phoenix St. Mary’s (AZ) 60
Ed Baur – January 26, 2017
Undefeated and top-ranked Shadow Mountain (19-0) continued its storm through the Arizona high school scene with an impressive 85-60 win at second-ranked St. Mary’s (12-9 with seven of those losses to out of state teams). The opening half showed just how much separation in talent there is between the Matadors and the rest of the state’s D4 schools as Shadow Mountain built a 58-29 lead going into the locker-room.
Once again it was exceptional quickness and a relentless press that proved to be the difference. We have praised Shadow’s guard trio -- (2017) 6’1” Marcus Shaver (SANTA BARBARA COMMIT), (2019) 6’ Jaelen House and (2019) 5’11” Jovan Blacksher – often in this season’s reports and they were outstanding in the first half. With a big lead in front of a hostile St. Mary’s student body, I think they may have gotten a little side-tracked (too much one-on-one work) in the second half and their shooting showed it. With the big lead, Coach Mike Bibby also dropped the aggressive press and that may have factored in as well.
Shaver, who played his first two years at St. Mary’s, may have had extra pressure in dealing with some of his former teammates and students. St. Mary’s isn’t a talent loaded team, but it plays a physical style of ball. Shaver finished with 22 points, many coming at the free throw-line after hard fouls. Shaver showed he’s a tough kid in this game.
House, despite sitting out most of the third quarter with foul trouble, finished with 24 points but he need quite a few shots to do it. Blacksher was also in double scoring figures, most coming in the first half.
St. Mary’s (2018) 6’10” KJ Hymes once again struggled against shorter defenders (Shadow’s ‘bigs’ are only 6’5” and 6’3”). Hymes is ideally a perimeter player who has a nice shooting touch, but doesn’t really play well with his back to the basket, rebound well or make a defensive presence in the paint.
If he works on getting his body stronger, he may be more impressive at the next level where we can take similar size players out on the perimeter and shoot over them or take them off the dribble.
He’s got another year and 2017-18 could be his breakout season. Obviously at the major college level they believe this future growth will occur as Hymes has a multitude of offers including Georgia Tech, Arizona State, Virginia, Clemson and Oklahoma.