NEW YORK, NY - The Rumble in the Bronx got underway on Friday at multiple venues throughout New York and New Jersey including Baruch College.
NYCHoops.net was in Manhattan and checked out some of the first round pool play action.
In one of the earlier 16U matches, The Louisiana Select ravaged the Rockland Rockets 74-31. A standout from the out-of-state squad was 2016 forward Cameron Pottain (Lakeview HS). Very athletic, Pottain at 6'4" was versatile offensively and a good rebounder. We're curious to see how he performs against better comp.
Playing up in the 16u division, The Cardinals, a team of 8th graders rose to the occasion. Utilizing good ball movement to counter their physical maturity, the Cardinals aka Team Scan sliced and diced the Metro Flyers 65-53.
The Flyers, did make a run late in the second half but paced by 6'7" Boubacar "Boogie" Diakite's (OSNA) 20 points, the Cardinals held them off. Look for the Cardinals to continue to pull-off similar upsets as this talent bunch plays up and aims high.
In the 17U divisions, the 17u New York RENs sans Rawle Alkins battled against the Staten Island Musketeers. The RENs however seemed quite capable without Alkins who was out of town at a Nike event. With a bulked up Jaquan McKennon masterfully running the point, creating an even distribution of scoring, the RENs surged ahead of the Musketeers 59-18 at the half, punctuated by blazing dunks from 6'6" Ryan Preston (South Shore/2015).
The Musketeers would eventually fall to the RENs, 84-31 led by Devyn Wilson's 19 points.
In the 16u division, the counterpart RENs team had their hands full versus New Jersey Thunder Elite for the first half of the game. Deadlocked at 59 with 9:50 left to play, the RENs pulled ahead 69-59 with 6 minutes left to play.
Paced by Jared Rivers (Christ the King), 26 points and Taevon Ashmeade's (LaSalle Academy/2015) 21 points the RENs would wear down the NJ Thunder Elite to win, 87-71.
Most of the pool play games consisted of one team being totally overmatched by the other. While some of the early round games were of interest, the real fun begins during the first round of the play-offs.