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Battle of the Midway: All-tournament team

Detroit Loyola junior Myron Gardner scored more than 60 points over two games at Corunna’s Battle of the Midway before Christmas.

MVP Myron Gardner  6-6  Jr  Detroit Loyola: A top 10 player in Michigan’s 2019 class and the most highly regarded prospect in the field for Corunna’s Battle of the Midway, Gardner had 29 points and 16 rebounds in a loss to Hazel Park and 32 points and seven rebounds in a defeat of Rochester Stoney Creek. Gardner is a big kid, and is at his best finding daylight on the baseline and attacking the hoop with one dribble. He’s a horse on the offensive glass and that pays off because of his soft foul touch — he made all eight attempts from the stripe against Stoney Creek. Knocks down corner three-pointers. There’s still a lot of work to do to become a high-major recruit, most noticeably with ball-handling and footwork on the perimeter to help Gardner either get to the basket or create space for his shot. As of now it’s too often going to be a turnover when pushed away from the basket, either losing the ball, traveling, five seconds or getting a charge trying to bull his way into a defender. He also needs to play lower and quicker defensively, because though listed on the roster as a “guard/forward,” he’s not able to check guards right now.

Jaden Akins  6-3  Fr  Farmington: While Farmington lost by a bucket to Parkway Christian, it wouldn’t have been that close without the efforts of Akins. Ninth-grade status be damned, he took his game up a notch in the fourth quarter and finished with 21 points, four assists and four steals. Akins is a smooth left-hander who made good decisions on the break, knocked down clutch three-pointers, had focus and hang-time to finish through contact and had stretches of strong defense. With maturation could be recruited at a very high level by the time all is said and done.

Ben Davidson  6-3  Sr  St. Clair: This Ferris State signee was the picture of efficiency in St. Clair’s win over Detroit Public Safety, scoring 24 points while shooting 10-of-14 from the floor and making both his foul shots. Plays at his own pace, not getting rushed into bad decisions. Scores from various spots on the floor. Patient and strong with the ball, active and smart off the ball, hard to cover because he doesn’t stop moving. Won’t be the primary ball-handler or go-to scorer at the next level, but fills in the gaps and will help you win.

Logan LePage  6-4  Jr  Corunna: He looks like Sam Cornett, a Lake Superior State freshman guard via Muskegon and Grandville, and for stretches played like him. LePage will get college looks on physique alone, but he skills are catching up and he plays very hard.  Filled up the stat book in a win over Parkway Christian with 20 points, eight rebounds and nine assists. Did a great job finding Corunna big man Sage Walker in his sweet spots for easy finishes. Range on his jumpshot has improved. Can get to the rim, but needs to work on his left hand in there.

Kyle Hensley  6-6  Sr  Sterling Hts. Parkway Christian: Showed his versatility going against a bigger player, Corunna’s 6-9 junior Sage Walker, and then being able to stay on the court and dominate the glass against Farmington’s five-guard lineup the following day. Hensley had 24 points on 8-of-12 shooting and six rebounds in the loss to Corunna and 21 points and 16 boards in the win against Farmington. He’s a strong, below-the-rim post who can step out to not just his the three-pointer, but pass from the top of the key, wing or out of post double-teams. He’s a good rebounder because while he may not jump particularly high, Hensley jumps quickly. Good balance and base as a post scorer. Can help at the small college level.

Kyle Washington  6-3  Sr  Hazel Park: This could have been any number of players from Hazel Park, which has been as impressive as any team in the state with wins over East English Village and DEPSA. The Vikings beat Loyola at Corunna, running them out of the gym for many stretches. Which makes Washington all that more impressive — standing out for his athleticism, on a team of athletes. Has a college frame and physique and can really get out on the wings and finish. Does a good job getting into the passing lanes and turning ends. Washington is joined on an undersized but productive frontline with 6-5 senior shot-blocker Khari Adams.

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