PGH Freshman Showcase Texas: Glue Players
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The game of basketball is flooded with different terminology used to describe player types and player molds. One of my favorite terms used to identify hoopers… “Glue” players. What is a glue player you ask? The best way I can…
The game of basketball is flooded with different terminology used to describe player types and player molds. One of my favorite terms used to identify hoopers… “Glue” players. What is a glue player you ask? The best way I can describe the term is a player that helps bring a team together as one unit. Whether it be through their gameplay, or through other aspects like team work, leadership, and effort. A glue player can most times be described as a player that does the necessary tasks to win that might not reflect in the stat sheet. A player that is unselfish, has a great understanding of the game, and often times, does the “dirty” work. At the latest PGH Freshman Showcase there were plenty of glue players on display. Here is my list of hoopers that caught my eye, while holding it together for their squads.
Brooke made things happen for her team in several different ways. She would run the point and take command of her teams pace and spacing, and also play off the ball, proving to be a threat with both her jumper AND her ability to put it on the floor. One of the most skilled at the showcase when it came to finding open teammates in the halfcourt as well as in transition. Her defensive play was also a sight to see as she could defend the opposing point guard with ease and when they were put into switching situations defensively, she was able to hold her own against bigger, stronger wing type players. A tough, well-conditioned kid that always gives maximum effort that found success throughout the day by tallying a number of assists, knocking in open jumpshots, and even displayed a nice float game.
Delafosse is a long-athletic hooper that impressed me all day long with her swaggy gameplay and ability to see the floor. Her court vision was near the top of the pack as she was able to make long, accurate passes to teammates in transition for easy layups. Lyla has a lot of what I like to call “shake” in her game. The skill-set and handles to lose defenders off the dribble over and over again, leaving them in the dust. On her way to finishing a tough bucket in the lane, she used a pass fake to the corner causing the help side defender to completely turn around, taking them out of the play completely. Got me out of my seat on that one. Showed great use of the pump fake and look-off pass and had defenders reaching at air with her in-n-out crossover move. A swaggy player like mentioned before but, also very humble at the same time. Perfect example of a glue player with this baller.
This kid is tough as nails. Aniya sacrificed her body on several occasions only to hop right back up, and shake it off. A point guard that showed great basketball IQ and an impressive understanding of game flow. She set her teammates up for easy finishes all day long and even made a few passes that I didn’t think were possible to pull off. Her squad had some scorers on the roster, but it was obvious when it was crunch time, they relied heavily on Taylor to shake her man up and get to the rim. Spent a ton of time on the free throw line as the defense could not stop her from getting to the cup and she was able to manipulate defenders into bad situations quite often. In one game I think I counted 6 or 7 times when she actually hit the floor and some of those falls made the crowd gasp. The physical punishment she endured was no match for her mental toughness though. Aniya showed no signs of weakness or exhaustion which I knew for a fact put fear into the opposing teams mind frame. This kid will make it far with her passion and effort alone. On top of the fact that she can flat out ball.
Another chance to use one of my favorite terms with this evaluation.is a “Swiss-Army Knife” type of player. She has the ability and skill set to contribute in a number of different ways on the court. A really fun player to watch. I first saw her hit a defender with an in-n-out crossover move that she ended with a step back jumper right in the defender’s face. Another “got me out of my seat” moment. Showed high IQ all day long and often went to her left hand when finishing inside. If I were to keep track of how many times players drove to the lane and kicked to an open shooter, she would’ve easily led that statistical category. Used the pump fake on perimeter extremely well causing her defender to rise up while she worked around them and into the paint. Maybe not the leading scorer on her team but definitely made things happen for them time and time again. Her squad would’ve crumbled without her. Excited to see what happens with this one as she begins her high school basketball career.
Simply put, Scott was the strongest player at the 2023 PGH Freshman Showcase in Texas. Her strength allowed her to do things on the court that you would usually only see out of a junior or senior in high school and even in some collegiate level players. Amanda is the definition of a well-rounded player, and I don’t use that term lightly here. Shes very shifty, quick first step, can shoot the long ball, hits the paint and rarely doesn’t finish, and on defense there isn’t a single task she isn’t able to handle. A relentless rebounder that is nearly impossible to box out, Amanda thrives on cleaning up possessions and doing the dirty work. She split time at the point guard and 2 guard spots and was able to go from distributor to bucket getter whenever she pleased. Literally ripped the ball from opposing player’s hands at times making them look like 7th grade players that did not belong on the court with her. I’m going to go ahead and say that not only does Scott have D1 potential, but I’m going to make it clear that she is a lock to land a division 1 scholarship one day. Shes way ahead of her time and I imagine she will continue to display that trend in her game.
Anderson was literally unstoppable when she decided to take her man off the dribble. With a surprisingly quick first step and her sturdy frame, defenses could not find a way to contain her throughout the entire showcase. The main things that stood out to me about Jamyla was her determination on the defensive end and her varsity level court vision. Placed on a team that struggled at times, she took it upon herself to make the world go ’round for her team. One possession I saw her cross her defender up to make space and finish with nice touch in the paint. The next time down the court she made a similar move to lose her defender, but this time, when the defensive help stepped in she delivered a quick and accurate pass to an open shooter on the perimeter for a 3 ball. A few possessions after that she threw a pump fake to move her defender and snaked through the lane and dropped off a near perfect pass to her post man for an easy finish from the low block. After seeing these 3 possessions I was convinced that she was holding it all together for her team. A prime candidate for the top glue player of the entire event. Jamyla should make an immediate impact as a freshman at Billy Ryan. You’ll see more of this hooper very soon from several media outlets in the Dallas area. Mark my words.
Katelyn has an “Olds” school feel to her game. A plug and play type of player that seems to thrive in any situation she is put in. She was able to display her entire skill set as the showcase progressed and had me in awe because of how versatile she was. Handled the ball very well for her team, impressive for a taller player. Showed a tight and effective behind the back dribble all day and was able to get around her defender with ease. The reason I use the term “old school” to describe her game is because she puts to use all of the fundamental and lost arts of the game. Her pump fake was surgical down low and used it quite often to get to her up and under move. Had me out of my seat when she used a pass fake to freeze her defender then quickly finished at the rim, and showed time and time again that she is on her way to mastering the offensive putback game. Constant deflections and steals on defense proved that she does not take plays off to rest and is always locked in. Rebounding on the defensive end seemed to be one of her strongest attributes. I’m going to throw a name into the mix when comparing her rebounding skills to one of my favorite players. DENNIS RODMAN comes to mind when watching her rebound. Her relentlessness and the way she secured the ball all day had me thinking “This is the 9th grade, female version of Rodman.” Katelyn should stand out in her freshmen class at Liberty Hill and will have the opportunity for quality minutes as a newbie on the varsity level.
Saved the best for last with this evaluation. It has probably been said before but my honest opinion about Pringle is that she will play Division 1 basketball one day. Her team at the PGH Freshman Showcase was stacked with talent, and sometimes that makes for a hard time displaying your own individual skills. Not the case here. When other talented teammates of hers were busy going to work, Pringle had no issues stepping aside at times and doing the dirty work. Don’t get me wrong, she had her “MVP” moments for sure, but what really impressed me about Maci was her understanding of when to turn it on, and turn it off. Constantly created second possessions for her team all day and pushed the ball up the floor when it was time to get out and run on the break. I felt like I was watching an older player amongst freshman when I got to see her play. Very vocal and was never stumped by the defense when they “switched” screens or “doubled” her. She has equipped herself with a very mature game IQ and that will only get better as she ages. Proved that she could defend 1-5 on the court and will be a matchup nightmare for smaller, less-athletic guards. A very springy base to combine with her impressive wingspan stood out all day long and she should hit 6 foot by the end of her freshman year easily. Maci will play for Flower Mound High where the level of competition should be pretty high. I am confident that she will not only get playing time on the varsity as a 9th grader but will also prove to be a GLUE player for the Lady Jags all season.