LA CROSSE, Wis. – One of the top events each year, the 2017 Midwest Players Classic returned to the La Crosse Center on Saturday. In a matchup between the top two ranked teams in Division 2, La Crosse Central made it look easy against Waunakee thanks to big performances from their 1-2 punch of Bailey Kale and Kobe King…
Carlos Curtis – 2018 – G – Milwaukee Riverside
Without Terrence Lewis on the floor, Curtis tried to carry the load, but Riverside was bounced by Woodbury. Curtis did have 21 points on 10-of-16 shooting. As always, he mixed it up with jumpers and drives to the rim. When Curtis’ outside shot is falling, he’s too much to handle. A long, strong, 6-foot-3, 190-pound guard, Curtis out-toughs people around the rim and isn’t fazed by tight defense or contact. He forces defenders to give him a step or two and continues to improve his jump shot. Also developing his skills as a point guard, Curtis continued to pass the ball at a high level. He had five assists in the loss.
Noah Fredrickson – 2017 – G – Onalaska
Fredrickson appears to be a quality Division 3 prospect that can run a team and/or be a go-to scorer. He had 19 points for Onalaska in their win over Minnehaha Academy on Saturday, breaking the defense down in the half court and in transition. It seemed like every time Onalaska needed a bucket, Fredrickson was there to deliver. Fredrickson surprised with his ability to shake some pretty good athletes, pull up, and hit mid-range jumpers under duress. Onalaska isn’t being talked about as one of the favorites in Division 2, but certainly look the part if Fredrickson continues to play like that.
Alou Dillon – 2017 – F – Wauwatosa West
Dillon didn’t have the biggest game, but flashed his high ceiling in other areas. A 6-foot-8, 200-pound forward, Dillon flashed his versatility and ability to play out on the perimeter, particularly down the stretch. Dillon helped put the game away by taking bigger forwards off the dribble and either getting to the rim or hitting from mid-range en route to 13 points. Dillon wasn’t relied upon to score for the entire 36 minutes, but contributed in other areas, particularly owning the glass and hitting his guards with precision outlet passes down the floor.
Eddie Harwick – 2017 – PG – La Crosse Aquinas
Harwick should be a solid pickup at the Division 3 level. An excellent ball handler who can make defenders whiff, Harwick showed a strong ability to create for himself offensively. He can force the issue a little too much, but Harwick also has the ability to make big plays. Harwick did a nice job of handling pressure and making plays in traffic for both himself and others. He had a game-high 18 points in Aquinas’ win over Wisconsin Rapids Assumption.
Michael Jones – 2018 – G/F – Woodbury
Jones was unreal in Woodbury’s win over Riverside. It didn’t matter who the opposition put on him, Jones wouldn’t miss. He exploded for 37 points, two shy of the event record. Jones was on fire for 36 minutes from downtown, catching and shooting and hitting nothing but net. He wasn’t rattled by a hand in his face or contact off the ball. Jones was poised against an aggressive Riverside defense and even got into the paint consistently. The 6-foot-4 junior is quite lanky and has a quick flick of the wrist to get his shot off in a hurry. He knocked down a total of eight 3-pointers in Saturday’s victory.
Bailey Kale – 2017 – PG – La Crosse Central
Minnesota-Duluth is getting a good one here. Kale is so tough to defend because his 3-point shooting ability and speed off the dribble. The 5-foot-11 guard has a nice blend of burst and smoothness on his drives that throws defenders off. He’s always been an underrated transition guard that doesn’t struggle to finish against contact, but often just beats the defense down the floor, even with the ball. Kale is often deadly from downtown and forces opponents to pick their poison. He scored a game-high 21 points in a blowout win over Waunakee.
Kobe King – 2017 – SG – La Crosse Central
You just have to admire how offensively versatile King is. Teams can take one, maybe two things away from, but King has so many tools at his disposal. King is truly an effective scorer from all three levels. On a smaller team, King plays most of the game on the block and thus has developed a tremendous back-to-the-basket skill set. Waunakee threw double and triple teams at King throughout the game and always seemed to have excellent help-side defense, but King was able to beat it with either the shot or the pass. A player that does it all, King registered 20 points, 11 rebounds, and four assists. He also defended at a very high level, flustering Waunakee’s guards in the blowout win.
Owen King – 2018 – G – Caledonia
King has a unique ability to run a team, yet still put up huge numbers offensively even as an unselfish guard. The South Dakota State commit exploded for 29 points in a close loss to Wauwatosa West. King owned the box score, racking up a handful of assists, rebounds, and steals. He doesn’t blow you away with size, speed, or athleticism, but can be so dynamic with the ball in his hands. At 6-foot-2, 180 pounds, King looks like he can play on or off the ball at the next level. With terrific ball handling skills, vision, and shooting ability, King is a lot to handle. Credit the Jackrabbits for sealing the deal on King, who looks like a big sleeper in the 2018 class.
Terry Lockett – 2020 – G – Minnehaha Academy
With Jalen Suggs battling foul trouble, Lockett was sensational and kept Minnehaha Academy close in a loss to Onalaska. The touted freshman caught fire in the second half, putting the squad on his back at times. Lockett is a terrific dribble penetrating guard with a devastating crossover dribble. Lockett can finish at the level, using terrific body control and touch in traffic. Also a strong 3-point shooter, Lockett can play off the ball and field off dribble penetration. His range also extends well past the 3-point line. Lockett scored a team-high 17 points in the defeat.
C.J. Siegel – 2018 – PG – La Crosse Logan
An under the radar player in the 2018 class, Siegel is a low major/Division 2 prospect. Siegel has great quickness and burst off the dribble – the type of speed where if you blink he’s already past the defender. He didn’t get a chance to showcase it on Saturday, but Siegel is quite explosive for his 5-foot-9 frame and will play above the rim. An improved mid-range and 3-point shooter, Siegel shot a high percentage from the field and shook defenders off the dribble with ease. Siegel finished the game with a strong spurt, scoring the final seven points for Logan to push the game into overtime, including going 90-feet to tie the game just prior to the buzzer. He finished with
C.J. Siegel listed Lehigh, Columbia, Brown, Harvard, and Drake and schools currently expressing interest.
Carlos Curtis has offers from IUPUI and Green Bay. Creighton, Marquette, Miami (FL), Illinois, Memphis, UNLV, and many others are showing interest.
Mitch Listau has offers from Toledo, Green Bay, Milwaukee, Elon, and South Dakota State. He listed Minnesota, Wisconsin, Nebraska, Ohio, North Dakota State, North Dakota, South Dakota, Drake, and UC-Davis as schools currently interested.