All-Summer 2017 for the Class of 2018
We really like our all-summer picks, especially the top 5 of Yokie Lee, Krystal Carlson, Noelle Josephson, Sam Haiby and Heaven Hamling. On the other hand, as we look through our entire list of 20 girls, it is surprising that…
We really like our all-summer picks, especially the top 5 of Yokie Lee, Krystal Carlson, Noelle Josephson, Sam Haiby and Heaven Hamling. On the other hand, as we look through our entire list of 20 girls, it is surprising that only 8 of our list of 20 are committed to play ball at the next level. That leaves 12 of the 20 available to some smart college coach.
We have especially high expectations for Carlson and Josephson, 2 highly skilled wings who can also crash inside, especially Carlson. Neither is big for her skill set, I suppose, but the skills are real and varied.
The list of all-summer picks also reinforces the sense that North Tartan 11th EYBL pretty much spread-eagles this field as 4 of their players are here among our list of 20. Stars Hersch, Stars DeSart and Metro Stars Wiese each have 2 girls on the list.
Center–Yokie Lee, 6-5½, Nice and Byron (Kansas State)
You don’t see a whole lot of Yokie Lee and the Nice over the course of the summer. They skipped the AAU tournament. But, when they played and when Yokie Lee played, she played like the Kansas State recruit that she is. 6-5½ is a lot of it, but I also like her reaction time. When she misses, for example, she is quicker than you’d expect getting back up and after the offensive board. The Nice went 6-0 at the Nike Nationals, so you know Yokie had a very nice tournament there.
Power Forward—Krystal Carlson, 5-11, Stars 11th Hersch and Hastings (unsigned)
Stars Hersch has plenty of talent, which is how they finished 2nd at the AAU and are rated #2 in our rankings. Yet, early in the summer an observer watching Stars Hersch for awhile and said, “They should just let Carlson shoot it any time she wants.” Nobody argued the point. Carlson works hard to get open, catches the ball in traffic and has a great shooting touch from just about anywhere. I guess she’s unsigned because she’s 5-11, but she plays bigger than that as her rebounding and shot blocking numbers show.
Small Forward–Noelle Josephson, 5-9, Stars 11th DeSart and Anoka (unsigned)
Josephson is the surprise among our top 5. She has perhaps deferred a little bit to her older and bigger teammates at Anoka. But, this summer she has gotten aggressive on offense, attacking the paint and scoring at the rim or on a mid-range pull-up jumper. She’s also a solid passer. She’s not a particularly physical defender but relies on quick hands to keep opponents off-balance.
Point Guard—Heaven Hamling, 5-8, Stars 11th Hersch and Grand Rapids (unsigned)
This is a very tough choice between Hamling and Megan Walker of Tartan 11th EYBL. In the end, we thought that Hamling was more important to her team than Walker. Take Hamling away and Stars Hersch are several slots lower in our rankings. She has great handles, penetrates into the lane against almost any defender, and either scores on a little floater or dishes to an open teammate. Walker’s strength probably makes her a better prospect at the next level, but Hamling has had much more impaact on her own team this summer–as in the bomb from the corner that she hit to beat Texas Elite, which had lost only one game all year at the time, 62-60 in the Top Tier tournament at Kennedy last week.
Shooting Guard—Sam Haiby, 5-9, North Tartan 11th EYBL and Moorhead (Nebraska)
Sam is our Player of the Summer for the class of 2018. She is the most athletic player among the 2018 all-summer team. She is an unstoppable scorer from long range and also at the rim. On the state’s best and most talented team, she is the one indispensible player against nationally elite opponents. Watch for a more in-depth profile of Sam Haiby, including her recent commitment to play Big 10 ball at Nebraska.
Center–Monika Czinano, 6-2, Fury 2018 Elite and Watertown-Mayer (Iowa)
Strong and aggressive, really attacks the rim, physical defender. Headed to Iowa.
Power Forward–Megan Walstad, 6-3, North Tartan 11th EYBL and Eastview (Milwaukee)
Small Forward–Emma Grothaus, 6-3, North Tartan 11th EYBL and Mahtomedi (Lehigh)
Point Guard—Megan Walker, 5-11, North Tartan 11th EYBL and Minnetonka (Lehigh)
Now you know why Tartan is the #1 team in the top age group, meaning these 3 plus of course Sam Haiby. All 3 consistently provide Tartan with a height advantage at their position. Walstad and Walker are among the strongest players at their position as well. Walstad is a solid defender and a great rebounder with plenty of vertical, and has extended her shooting range out to about 15 feet. Walker’s range is about twice that. She’s more strong with the ball than quick but either way she gets to her spot, hits her shots and gets the ball to teammates in the right places. Grothaus likes to take it to the rim off the bounce. She too is not the quickest but she is a very smart player who is always in position on both sides of the ball.
Walstad is headed to Milwaukee, Grothaus and Walker both to Lehigh.
Shooting Guard—Rachel Hakes, 5-11, Metro Stars Wiese and Woodbury (Fairfield)
At Woodbury she’s known as a scorer with lots of range on her shot. For the Metro Stars, she brings big energy to the defense and seems happy to leave the scoring to others. Fundamentally sound, no weaknesses. Headed to Fairfield.
Center—Bren Fox, 6-2, Stars 11th DeSart and NYA (unsigned)
Great defender, shot blocker, rebounder, doesn’t get faked off her feet, always in position to make a play. Nice touch going to her right, not much of a threat going the other way, however.
Power Forward—Syd Schultz, 5-11, So Minn Fury 2018 Elite and Owatonna (unsigned)
Got her team off to a great (2-0) start at the AAU, then went down (along with SMFE’s hopes) with a concussion. But, she bounced back to play some more good ball later in the summer. A strong, determined scorer who gets to the rim and finishes.
Small Forward—Katherna Theis, 5-11, Crossfire Erlien and Maple Grove (unsigned)
Athletic wing, mobile enough to play on the perimeter, big and strong enough to score inside.
Point Guard—Amanda Pollard, 5-10, Metro Stars Wiese and Champlin Park (unsigned)
Yes, we missed on Pollard before this summer. But, who could fail to notice the caliber of ball she has played for MSW? She is strong and aggressive with the ball, pushes the pace, plays fearlessly, and she uses her strength and quickness to play some of the best perimeter defense of the summer as well.
Shooting Guard—Morgan Hill, 5-9, Tayler Hill Elite and Mpls. South (unsigned)
Hill was always able to get to the rim off the bounce, but this past year she has improved her game in a couple of ways. One, she is converting more this past year. Second, she’s also playing off the ball and getting to the rim and converting off the cut. I haven’t seen anybody stop her this summer.
Center–Zoe Hardwick, 6-3, Metro Stars Wiese and Minnetonka (unsigned)
Vastly improved over the past year. She’ll never be the quickest post but she has great footwork and can score inside with an ever-increasing repertoire of moves. Hard worker.
Power Forward–Olivia Travis, 6-0, Suns R. Long and DeLaSalle (unsigned)
A bit of a late bloomer who has played the best ball of her life this summer. Has great hands, catches and converts inside and has been a monster on the boards.
Small Forward–Annika Sougstad, 5-10, Comets 11th Elite and Mahtomedi (unsigned)
The quintessential “little things” player. Always a great defender, moves the ball and moves without the ball, hits the boards, and now she’s becoming more and more of a scoring threat.
Point Guard–Nicole Herbranson, 5-10, Cyclones and Barnesville (MSU Moorhead)
An MSU-Moorhead recruit who finally gave metro area fans a chance to see her. Came to town with the Cyclones for a couple of tournaments, including the AAU, and showed that she could get into the paint with the ball at will and, mainly, score (several 20+ point games) on a mid-range jumper.
Shooting Guard–Justyna Butler, 5-8, Fury 2018 Gold and Cretin (unsigned)
Has missed most of the past 2 years with injuries. Her stock in trade is her jumper, but she also has a nice basketball IQ.