This is “Playoffs: Paragraph, Phrase, Player”, a two-part article in which I will be going through each player on both the Varsity Boys and Girls B-CC Basketball teams and giving insight on each player using one paragraph, one phrase, and one player. Here’s how it works:
Paragraph: I will write a few sentences (some may call this a paragraph) about each player, and how they can impact their team in the Playoffs.
Phrase: I will try to encapsulate their game in just one phrase. Simple enough.
Player: I will give a “100% Accurate” professional player comparison. I know these comparisons will be a little hyperbolic, but bear with me; the comparisons are meant to describe the type of player, not the skill of player. Also, I am just giving the name of the player; how you take that information is up to you.
Up first, Coach Tracy’s squad:
Elijah Wood, G, Junior:
Paragraph: Elijah Wood, the D-I Tulane Green Wave commit, is one of the most gifted players in the history of the program. At 6-foot-6, Elijah can jump out of the gym. He averages more than 2 blocks a game, and is never afraid to go up for a fast break slam to get the crowd going. But his athleticism is just one of his many assets: his ability to glide through defenders and find his teammates for open buckets is what makes him such a prolific player. Wood attracts so much attention from the defense that he can always find his open teammates for easy buckets. Elijah’s ability to drive and score the bucket or get fouled, or both, is incredibly impressive and always throws opposing defenders into a fit. If Elijah locks down on defense and can let the offense flow through him, this Barons team could be hard to stop in the Playoffs.
Phrase: Athletic potential off the charts.
Player: Ben Simmons
Tyler Groom, G, Senior:
Paragraph: Groom may be one of the smaller players on the court, but he makes up for it with his defensive aggression and offensive prowess. Tyler is perhaps the shiftiest player on the Barons, and he makes it known whenever he is on the floor. He has no trouble sending defenders into a daze, blowing right by them for an easy two points or an easy assist. The D-III Lebanon Valley commit has a knack for getting in opponents’ heads, forcing them off their game, while taking advantage of it for his own gain. As the starting point guard, his performance will be crucial to the team’s success; but knowing the player he is, I think he’ll thrive in a playoff atmosphere.
Phrase: Competitive spirit unmatched by others.
Player: Isaiah Thomas
Kevin McAuliffe, G, Senior:
Paragraph: This Barons team wouldn’t work without McAuliffe. Sure, he may not have the athleticism of Wood or the craftiness of Groom, but he has heart, and a lot of it. Kevin hustles harder than anyone on the floor. Up 20 points, down 20 points, it doesn’t matter — McAuliffe will be on the ground fighting for loose balls, taking charges, or barreling inside for the and-1. As the Barons’ leading scorer, the D-III Vassar College commit should help B-CC in a plethora of ways in the Playoffs.
Phrase: The lifeblood of the Barons.
Player: Larry Bird (like I said, bear with me)
Eli Davis, F, Junior:
Paragraph: He’ll rarely lead the team in points, rebounds, or assists, but Davis is always filling up the stat sheet. He can score, he can rebound, he can pass, and he can defend. There isn’t really anything he can’t do at an adequate level. Basketball is a team sport, and Davis is the ultimate team player. You can slot him into any lineup and he’ll have a positive impact more often than not. A player like this is crucial in a team looking to make a deep playoff run.
Phrase: All-around difference maker.
Player: Pascal Siakam
Joe Jepsen, F/C, Junior:
Paragraph: Joe Jepsen will out rebound you. Joe Jepsen will work his way inside the paint. Joe Jepsen will score buckets over you. An offensive rebound machine, Jepsen saves many possessions for the Barons and allows the team to get points that would be lost without his expertise in the art of boxing out. When he’s engaged, it can be a nightmare for opposing teams. Jepsen will get many valuable minutes in the playoffs, and if he can take advantage of them, it’ll be hard to stop him.
Phrase: Board-getting box out beast.
Player: Enes Kanter
Cole Doherty, G, Senior:
Paragraph: “Cole Doherty for three!” is one of the tweets I make most often on @BCC_Sports, and with good reason. Doherty has made 3 or more three pointers on ten different occasions this year, including a 5-three pointer performance against Wheaton. His pure shooting ability is by far the best on the team, and perhaps one of the best in the county. He has the sixth-most made three pointers of anyone in MCPS, and he is the only one of those six to do so while coming off of the bench in the majority of games. On any given night Doherty can become lights out from deep, and if that happens in any playoff games, I wish the other team good luck.
Phrase: Lights-out shooter when hot.
Player: Kyle Korver
Jack Robinson, G, Senior:
Paragraph: Being a ‘veteran player’ in high school basketball doesn’t really make a lot of sense. But Jack Robinson? He’s a veteran. Robinson has been playing sports his whole life, and despite numerous unfortunate injuries in his young career, has always come back with a newfound sense of grit and determination. When Robinson comes of the bench, the offense immediately starts to run with a certain sophistication and grace that is beautiful to watch. Even when he’s not on the court, his knowledge of the game is invaluable to teammates around him. Any championship team has a guy like Jack Robinson, so maybe he will be that guy on this championship team.
Phrase: Team leader on and off the court.
Player: Tony Parker
Cameron Etris, F, Senior:
Paragraph: Cam Etris has played numerous roles for this Barons squad over this season, whether it be starting at center or coming off the bench as a forward. But he has always adjusted well to the role he’s given. A guy that’s ready to play whenever his name is called, Etris can come into any game in any situation and knock down a couple threes, take a charge, or grab a couple boards in a matter of a few minutes. Cam’s minutes will vary based on each playoff matchup, but I think he’ll make the most of whatever playing time he gets.
Phrase: Ready for anything.
Player: Brook Lopez
Nick Roberson, G, Junior:
Paragraph: Defense is something the Barons have had some struggles with throughout the season. One guy who can help stop those struggles? Nick Roberson. If you need someone to lock down the opposing point guard on a possession, Roberson will get the call. Coach Tracy has used Nick on defensive possessions late in games, and I wouldn’t be surprised to see that trend continue in the playoffs. All it takes is one stop to get your name forever etched in history.
Phrase: Grit and grind.
Player: Marcus Smart
Duncan Patchin, F, Senior:
Paragraph: Duncan Patchin is a fan favorite and a team favorite. He brings a sense of discipline to the team that only a guy like him can bring. He may not always make it onto the court, but his work with the team in the locker room and on the bench is very important for the Barons. Much like Jack Robinson, he’ll play in a big part in making sure the younger guys on the team don’t let the playoff atmosphere get in their heads.
Phrase: Team first mentality.
Player: Nick Collison
Michael (Turner) Payne, G, Junior:
Paragraph: Turner Payne is the definition of scrappy. His minutes may vary game to game, but his grit is there 24/7. Similar to Lucas Eliot, Payne has no problem adjusting to whatever is thrown at him. He’s only started one game, but it was in one of the biggest games of the season, away at Whitman. It’ll be very interesting to see the type of minutes he gets in the Playoffs. Even in limited minutes, he could make a big difference for this Barons team.
Phrase: Don’t sleep on him.
Player: Matthew Dellavedova
Curtis Chambers, G, Junior:
Paragraph: Curtis hasn’t touched the floor much this season due to the surplus of guards on the team, but in his few minutes of play he’s looked like he can be a valuable player for the Barons. He’s only taken two shots this year, but they’ve both gone in, and they’ve both been deep threes. It may be a small sample size, but there is definitely something there. He may not get to play much this in this year’s Playoffs, but I’d certainly keep an eye on him next year. But, with that said, he does have a track record of coming in and knocking down a quick three, so if that’s ever needed…
Phrase: Potential secret weapon.
Player: Monte Morris
Jaiden Barry, G, Junior:
Paragraph: Jaiden Barry has been one of my favorite players to watch this year for the Barons. Unfortunately, most of that watching has come with him on the bench. Barry is another player that has fallen victim to the deep rotation of guards. Then why I am such a big fan of his? It’s because, despite him not having a place in the game to game rotation, he is the most engaged player on the bench. He celebrates after every made shot, puts up three fingers after every three (he even turns away when he knows it’s going in), daps up his teammates when they come back to the bench, and takes in everything Coach Tracy says while in the huddle. At the end of the day, basketball is a sport, and sports should be fun — players like Jaiden Barry keep basketball fun.
Phrase: Bench mob.
Lucas Eliot, F, Junior:
Paragraph: Lucas Eliot, whenever he steps on the court, has full confidence that he is the best player on the court. He emanates confidence, which is extremely valuable for a player in a role like his. He may not get minutes in every game, but it doesn’t affect how he plays. Eliot will come in for the first time in two weeks and play as if he is in the middle of a 50 point performance. Next year he’ll play a bigger role, but right now it’s unfortunately hard to find minutes for him.
Phrase: Motivated to be the best.
Player: Mason Plumlee
Ajuan Chappell, F, Senior:
Paragraph: AJ is one of the most underrated guys on the squad. He has a natural athletic ability that goes highly unnoticed due to his limited playing time. The 6-foot-4 senior has what it takes to make a difference for the Barons. It’s hard to find minutes for all of your guys in a 40 minute playoff game, but I truly do think he deserves some. He’s a guy that just wants to play, and is willing to do whatever is necessary to try and make the team better while he’s on the court. His inside scoring ability can be helpful for a team that generates a lot of good looks around the basket.
Phrase: Work hard, play hard.
Player: Miles Bridges