Once again the annual Hidden Gems Fall Showcase took place at Thomas Worthington High School in suburban Columbus with over 300 players both boys and girls in attendance. Like usual, the event provided numerous student-athletes with the opportunity to play and showcase their skills in front of dozens of college coaches. Many individuals stood out, including a few from Northwest Ohio:
2021 G Cole McWhinnie (Toledo Christian) – Again showed he is developing into one of the better floor generals in his class in Toledo. McWhinnie makes good decisions with the basketball, facilitates, moves the ball, makes the right reads, and knocks down open shots with high-efficiency. Solid lateral quickness and understanding allow him to be sound defender as well. Proved why he is a prospect worth following for small college coaches over the next 18 months.
2020 G Zachary Szul (Anthony Wayne) – Already creating a buzz in Northwest Ohio for his play over the past few months, Szul solidified the hype and created even more of a following with his play on Saturday. With a pretty and reliable stroke as a jump shooter, along with his ability to get to and finish around the rim, Szul is a true three tier threat on the offensive end. Defensively he brings intensity, hustle, and is locked-in providing a strong presence on that side of the floor. Rebounds and is active in the paint for his position. Calm demeanor, smooth brand of basketball. Buy stock now in this young man before its too late.
2022 F Brock Makrancy (Findlay) – In the freshman and sophomore division Makrancy showed he was without a doubt one of the best talents in his class at the event. Delivering what was probably the most dominant performance we saw all day, Makrancy was all over the floor and making his presence known on every trip down the court. Can knock down perimeter shots with consistency, slash to the basket, and bang in the post. Runs the floor hard and competes. Very skilled, looked the part of a sure scholarship college basketball player in the future.
2021 F Justin Garcia (Westlake) – Someone who proved to be a true ‘hidden gem’ on Saturday, he was very impressive playing inside-out all day. Can knock down the deep ball with consistency, score with his back to the basket, and finish around the rim. Plays hard and with a chip on his shoulder. Good size standing around 6’7″, showed the makings of a quality prospect to track moving forward.
2020 G Kameron Taylor (Spire Institute) – Has nice size at the guard position with good athleticism and a quick first step out on the perimeter. Consistent shot off the dribble or the catch. Spaces the floor and has a good feel.
2022 G John Castrilla (Jefferson) – Really had a nice day out on the wing with his ability to score it, see the floor, and find his way around the basketball. Plays hard on both ends of the floor, doesn’t force things, and picks his spots well in the flow of a game. Should round out into a nice prospect with continued development.
2020 G Scottie Baldwin (Indiana Elite Prep) – Plays the game with a great joy and passion, can tell he likes to compete. Gets the ball moving on the offensive end, pushes the ball up the floor, can be a load in transition. Ability to score it with relative consistency, sets up teammates. Pretty good size around 6’1″ with quickness, solid communication on both ends of the floor.
Others who stood out: Lee Sims (Northland), Isaac Settles (Thomas Worthington), Sohn McGee (Westland), Sihr Summer (Delaware Hayes), Kenneth Hunter (Indiana Elite Prep), Savion Hamilton (Pickerington North), Landon Tillman (Westerville Central), Eddie Muhammed (Holland Springfield).