Hamilton and Johnson among Premier 80 standouts

WESTMINSTER, Ca. – A helping heaping of some of the very best high school guards from the Class of 2018 was on hand Wednesday – with a whole lot of coaches looking on – during the Baller.TV/Pangos Premier Showcase 80 at Westminster High.

The first day of the NCAA’s first week (out of three) of its July evaluation period was the reason coaches from all of the major conferences in the west – and all of those players who wanted to be seen by them, up close – showed up.

Among those heavily recruited – or soon to be, that is – seniors-to-be on display were Bryce Hamilton (Pasadena), Logan Johnson (Mountain View St. Francis), Payton Moore (Santa Monica), Garrett Pascoe (Concord Clayton Valley), Jamal Hartwell (L.A. Fairfax), Zekiah LoVett (Redondo Beach Redondo), Daniel Zahabian (Beverly Hills), DeShawn Washington (San Bernardino Cajon) and Jake Wojcik (San Jose Bellarmine Prep).

Hamilton, Johnson and Hartwell were also participants at the 15th Pangos All-American Camp at Cerritos College in Norwalk in early June.

Johnson and Hamilton matched up frequently in one of the first games on Wednesday and neither did anything to disappoint anyone who showed to gauge just “how good” one, the other or both are.

Hamilton was flicking in left-handed jumpers from all along the arc and scoring in pretty much every other fashion, too.

Johnson wasn’t waxing nearly as hot from the perimeter as his fellow left-hander was but the brother of Miami Heat guard Tyler Johnson distributed a half-dozen or so slick assists, threw down about as many either-hand dunks and also came up with some of the most spectacular blocks and steals of the night, as well.

Also contributing their share of nifty passes Wednesday evening (each kid played two games) were Pascoe, Zahabian, Moore, Hartwell and Washington.

Pascoe and Wojcik also knocked in a bunch of jump shots, as did LoVett (whose brother is a starting guard at St. John’s University).

Six-five Tony Goodwin, a transfer from Findlay Prep in Henderson (NV) and senior-to-be at Pasadena Maranatha, continued his relentless assault on anyone who tried to jump shoot over – or drive by – him, all the while showing why he may now be as good a man-to-man defender as there is in Southern California.

Turning in a strong effort as a rebounder and inside scorer was 6-8 senior-to-be Mehkel Harvey (Huntington Beach Ocean View).

Any of the coaches who came to the event in pursue of a Class of 2018 “power forward” who wasn’t already trying to recruit Harvey no doubt left the building thinking it would be a wise idea to begin doing exactly that immediately.

Event organizer Dinos Trigonis also has the Pangos Summer Sweet 16 on tap for this weekend.

It tips Friday at 4 p.m. at the MAP in Garden Grove and continues thru Saturday at the MAP.

Sunday the teams still remaining in the winners’ brackets will play at Cerritos College with consolation games at the MAP.

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