SUSSEX, Wis. – In a game that could very well help decide the Greater Metro Conference, Sussex Hamilton hosted Brookfield Central Tuesday night. Rebounding from a surprising loss to Brookfield East their last time out, Central took care of business with a key 61-49 road victory thanks to an outstanding defensive effort…

Patrick Baldwin Jr. – 2021 – G/F – Sussex Hamilton
The touted freshman battled through some solid physical defense most of the night and he found other ways to contribute without scoring the basketball. Central really keyed in on him, but Baldwin took over a stretch of the second half with his passing ability. Baldwin assisted on three of four consecutive buckets for Hamilton that pulled them within striking distance in the final period. A skilled, 6-foot-7 wing, Baldwin shows the signs of a player who will have all the tools. At his size and length, there’s only so much you can take away. While he’s a deadly perimeter shooter, Baldwin has the willingness to play on the block and use his size to his advantage. The sniper is always moving consistently makes the defense work. Even though he’s generally defended by smaller guards, Baldwin’s handles are good enough to hold off the pesky defenders who try and crowd him. Baldwin surveys the floor in transition like a point guard, always keeping his head up and making the right pass. Central got the better of Baldwin on Tuesday, holding him to eight points, but at some point in his career, there’s not going to be anything the opposition can do to stop Baldwin at the high school level.

David Joplin – 2021 – F – Brookfield Central
Most years, Joplin might be the top prospect in the state of Wisconsin. However, with future five-stars in Baldwin and Michael Foster in his class that’s tough.  Joplin is still a potential high major prospect a very intriguing talent that’s just scratching the surface. The 6-foot-5 freshman is more of a power forward’s body right now. When his skills catch up to his frame, Joplin could be scary good. He can handle and shoot the ball a little bit at this level, but does most of his work around the rim. Joplin had 13 points and racked up 15 rebounds Tuesday night. He was a little timid offensively, but flashed some nice moves on the block and was terrific on the defensive glass. An athletic, high-upside prospect, Joplin is sure to garner high major attention in the coming years. 

Gage Malensek – 2019 – PG – Brookfield Central
Malensek killed Sussex Hamilton in the paint on Tuesday. With some of his teammates in foul trouble, Malensek played 35 minutes and finished with 18 points. Using a deadly change of pace on the ball, Malensek lived in the teeth of the defense. The 5-foot-11 guard was 6-of-12 shooting and got to the foul line 10 times. Malensek puts so much pressure on the defense. Always looking to push, he’ll make a defender use his entire body to stop him from getting to the rim. Malensek plays at a high pace, but does so without forcing too much and playing out of control. He had a few turnovers from trying to do too much, but he appeared able to slow himself down and run the half court offense when needed. Malensek also had four assists in Tuesday’s win. 

Cole Nau – 2019 – PG – Brookfield Central
Nau battled foul trouble, but still turned in a strong performance. A player that always seems to elevate himself when the stakes are raised, Nau had 10 points on 3-of-6 shooting and six rebounds. He was asked to start the game on Baldwin and did a terrific job despite giving up about six inches. A lock down defender, Nau has slowed down and flustered some of the best players in the country. Able to play on or off the ball, Nau is a terrific catch and shoot guard and continues to get better on the ball, especially with his off-balance shooting on the go. A high-IQ, tenacious prospect that gets the most out of every minute he’s on the floor, Nau hopefully will stop being so under-recruited come this spring.