Westchester Hawks 14U headed to Columbus, Ohio to play against some of the best Junior High school teams and players in the region. Rob Taylor of Buckeye Prep Report was at the USA Sports Academy to cover age groups 15U & 17U. Unfortunately, the Hawks 15's fell short in the semi-finals and the 17's as Rob wrote "were without the services of their dynamic back court of...
However, the Hawks 14U made a 4-0 run only to lose in the championship, to a team they'd beat by 12 points during pool play. The Hawks had the player's which they needed in Jerron Love, Isaiah Whitehead and Yhanni Bartley.
Saturday, Hawks battled All-Ohio Red, Ohio Varsity & All-Ohio Black. They went 3-0. Sunday, Hawks defeated Lebron James Shooting Stars to play the championship game against All-Ohio Red.
Jerron Love (7th grade) played like the world was on his shoulders and with heart the size of the continent of Africa. Jerron ran the show and controlled the tempo each game. Love made no-look passes to assist his teammates with easy points. He penetrated the gaps and created plays in the lane. Love showed advanced ball handling skills and was too hard to guard. Jerron Love and Isaiah Whitehead 6'4 (8th grade) combined for an amazing backcourt and a 1-2 punch for the talented Hawks team. Whitehead scored every possible way, he even made a baseline shot from behind the backboard. He attacked the defense with vengeance and got his shot off using either hand in the paint. Isaiah's consistent from the 3 point line and has a good pull-up jumper. This weekend Whitehead was the best middle school player in the building . Yhanni Bartley (8th grade) a lefty forward caused damage in the red, he abused opponents on both offense and defense. Bartley worked the glass well, he got boards and put backs. Yhanni made strong drives to the rim and finished with defenders draped on him. When fouled on the way up, he made free throws to help give his team the advantage down the stretch. The starting five included Sonny Lorenzo (8th grade), who stepped it up on this level. On defense he slides his feet and doesn't reach for the rock. Lorenzo also has a good offensive skill-set.
In the final quarter of the championship game score was tied with 2.8 seconds remaining on clock. All-Ohio Red had possession and the Hawks players locked down their man, hoping to bring the game into over time. In a strike of luck, Justice Cornley (8th grade) of All-Ohio Red received the inbound pass and shot a Hail Mary 3 pointer to win the game.