Breakdown Report
Amber Smith
Amber Smith
Special to HoopGurlz.com
Posted Oct 3, 2006


Kentucky commit Amber Smith was among those who shined at Breakdown Magazine's Battle for the Rankings Camp in Orlando, Fla., this past weekend.

STORY & PHOTOS BY KURT COLEMAN


Breakdown Magazine sponsored the second annual Battle for the Rankings camp in Orlando today, bringing together top talent in the state for a weekend of drills and scrimmages before college scouts. The camp featured 160-plus players from various high schools and travel teams around the state.

The players were divided into 16 teams, with girls from the same region grouped together on teams. The strongest teams predictably were from Miami and Orlando. These teams renewed their running rivalry with relish.

The top players from the Orlando Comets, Hollywood Eagles and Premier Jaguars were sprinkled liberally among the teams. Additionally, several top high schools - such as Winter Haven, Orlando Christian Prep and Shekinah Christian - brought entire teams to the event.


Elise Clyburn - 2009
The camp started out on a sour note when Class of 2008 stars Brooke Thomas and Jordan Coleman went down with injuries in the first game and did not return.

But several players stepped up for their respective teams and created names for themselves this weekend. Lyrell Barfield of Norland High School had a tremendous tournament, winning overall MVP with her slashing moves to the bucket and dead-eye shooting. Barfield led her Miami team to the overall championship over Briyanna Blair's Orlando team.

Brittany Waters of Edgewater High School and the Comets Blue team also played with exceptional energy and earned high marks from the coaches. This tournament marked Waters' return from an injury that cost her the 2006 travel season. At 6-foot-1, Waters led her team in virtually every offensive category while displaying versatility by playing three positions on the floor. Brittany hopes to announce her college commitment in the very near future.

Amber Smith was voted MVP of the Class of 2007. She won that title last year, also. Smith, who has verballed to Kentucky, was the most individually effective player at the camp. She played for Winter Haven, her high school team, and showed why she is the top point guard in Florida this year. Smith's strength has always been her ability to penetrate and dish. At the Breakdown camp she showed off a high shooting percentage from the wing. Smith's outside shooting had always been considered her weakness. Not anymore; she was blazing from the field.

Most of the coaches agreed that Vontrice Dennis, Chelsea Regins and Andrea Smith were the cream of the Class of 2008 this weekend. Dennis won the Class of 2008 MVP award by a razor-thin margin over Regins and Smith after leading her team to the tournament championship. In fact, Dennis, Regins and Lyrrel Barfield were teammates on the championship team. Dennis is a 6-1 power forward who we expect to explode on the travel circuit next summer. She goes to the hole strong, has good handle and an excellent mid-range game.

Kaneisha Saunders of Atlantic High School won the Class of 2009 MVP award in a close vote over Arial Wilson. Saunders is a slashing two-guard who displays great mid-air body control in getting off her shot over much bigger players.

And Michelle Mitchell of Orlando Christian Prep was voted the top Class of 2010 player. Already known statewide for her three-point shooting prowess, Mitchell pulled down a rebound, went coast-to-coast, pirouetted, and scored a scoop layup over a senior. The whole gym exploded at that one. The vote on the 2010 MVP wasn't as close as the others.

All in all, it was a great weekend of basketball in the Sunshine State. The high school season starts in four weeks.

All-Tournament Teams

Lyrell Barfield
Tournament MVP
Vontrice Dennis
2008 MVP
Kaneisha Saunders
2009 MVP
Michelle Mitchell
2010 MVP
Amber Smith Chelsea Regins Arial Wilson Alecia DeVaughn
Briyanna Blair Andrea Smith Gabrielle Austin Ysenia Lora
Brittany Waters Sasha Chaplin Ashley Jones Jaclyn Maldonado
Shamar Harris Crystal Washington Sasha Bernard Latesha Johnson
Tierra Brown Andrell Smith Alexis Griffin Akaycha Robinson
Danielle Beneby Jalyssa Charadan Isabel Erhli Jade Givins


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