Making Their Points
Italee Lucas
Italee Lucas
National Director of Scouting
Posted Dec 21, 2006


The point guards of 2007, including Italee Lucas of Las Vegas, drew a line in the desert sand against the younger leads at the Nike Tournament of Champions.

PHOTOS BY GLENN NELSON

CHANDLER, Ariz. - The class of 2007 is making a point here at the 2006 Nike Tournament of Champions. That point is that they are still the cream of the crop and the 08’s and 09’s are just going to have to wait another year to take over.

Speaking of points, Wednesday saw a great battle of two of the top point guards in their respective classes in North Carolina signee, Italee Lucas from Centennial High School of Las Vegas, Nev., and 2008 prospect Nikki Speed from Marlborough High School of Los Angeles, Calif..


Nikki Speed of Marlborough
Lucas was simply phenomenal scoring and passing the ball. She finished with 35 points and 10 rebounds during the Centennial win and was unstoppable with the ball. She started out stutter-stepping with her shoulder shake that should be trademarked and stopped to pop a 20-foot three. You could tell she was juiced up to play another highly ranked player for a chance to leave no doubt about her abilities.

It’s not fair to compare the two players as apples to apples because Lucas’ role and strength is scoring first and Speed’s is defending and pushing the ball up the court. Lucas was in one of those zones that nobody was going to defend her today.

Another top point guard on display here at the TOC is Piedmont’s Casey Morris, who has a lot of shake and creative passing abilities. Her lateral change of direction is great and she has great length to cover a lot of ground where Speed utilizes just that, her speed as she kicks it into another gear in the open court. Epiphany Woodson, who is headed to Miami, is another great, in-control point guard who runs Providence Day of Charlotte, N.C., and can shoot the ball.

In the two semifinal games, the two fastest point guard in the country were on display in Lorin Dixon of Christ the King Regional High School in Middle Village, N.Y., and Danielle Robinson of Archbishop Mitty High School in San Jose, Calif. Both are unbelievable in the open court and get end line to endline faster than anyone in the country. They both play at the elite level in spite of their diminutive size. Robinson does it with a cat-like quickness and Dixon with an amazing vertical and hang time to accompany their speed.

All in all the senior point guards on display at the TOC are leaving some big shoes to fill for the underclassmen to keep the run of great point guard play alive here at the biggest high school tournament in the country.


Epiphany Woodson of Providence Day

Lorin Dixon of Christ the King



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Chris Hansen is the National Director of Scouting for Women's Basketball at HoopGurlz.com and Scout.com. He leads the panel that evaluates and ranks girl's basketball prospects nationally for HoopGurlz and Scout.com. Chris has been involved in the women’s basketball community since 1998 as a coach, trainer, evaluator and reporter. He can be reached at chansen@scout.com.




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