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HoopHall with terrific 20-game field this weekend

SPRINGFIELD, Ma. – A 20-game schedule over three days is on tap for the Spalding HoopHall Classic this weekend at Springfield College.

There is impressive representation from every region of the country, including the west (Bishop Gorman and Findlay Prep from Las Vegas; O’Dowd from Oakland CA; and Corona del Sol from Tempe, AZ), mid-west (Simeon and Stevenson from Illinois and Chaminade from St. Louis); south (Oak Hill in Virginia; Kinston in North Carolina; Montverde in Florida and Wheeler in Georgia) and, of course, the east.

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Lots of hoops action in SoCal this holiday weekend

LAGUNA NIGUEL, Ca. – Some terrific “one-day events” are on tap in Southern California during Martin Luther King birthday holiday weekend.

Saturday six games are on tap at Cerritos College for the Ron Massey Memorial/Public vs. Private Showcase, beginning at 1 o’clock with its one “public vs. public” contest, L.A. Dorsey vs. Norco.

A couple of interesting matchups are Tyler Dorsey-led Maranatha vs. Sedrick Barefield-led Corona Centennial at 5:30 p.m., and Redondo against El Cajon Foothills Christian at 7.

Foothills Christian is led by 6-foot-9 junior T.J.

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Lots of cool SoCal hoops action on Saturday

LAGUNA NIGUEL, Ca. – Three outstanding “one-day events” will provide plenty of quality high school hoops action for those craving it on Saturday.

*The Cavalier Classic is being hosted by Serra High in Gardena, with action tipping off at 11 Saturday morning.

Things wrap with the 8 o’clock matchup between Renaissance Academy and the “Ball Brother (Lonzo and LiAngelo)”-led Chino Hills Huskies.

*San Diego Lincoln High is the site for the San Diego-Los Angeles Challenge, whose five-game slate tips at noon.

Defending San Diego Division I champion La Costa Canyon plays L.A.

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Two guards take charge at Take Flight Challenge

LOS ANGELES – The second annual Take Flight Challenge, presented by Redondo Union High, proved a veritable smorgasbord for the high school basketball connoisseurs who made their way into the Jordan Hangar for 12 hours or so Saturday.

There were seven games and among the highlights were:

*A remarkable comeback in Game 1, during which the Compton High Tarbabes overcome double-digit deficits in the second half to edge Lawndale, 54-52, behind the drive, finish “And 1” by senior Robert Lewis with 11.9 seconds remaining;

*A strong performance by USC-bound forward Bennie Boatwright, who scored 20 points, grabbed 16 rebounds and blocked a couple of shots to lead Sun Valley Village Christian to a 54-42 victory over Santa Monica;

*The terrific outside shooting of junior Jacob Davison (18 points, including three of four shots from behind the arc) to go along with the strong post punch of Gligorije Rakocevic and Balsa Dragovic as Montebello Cantwell Sacred-Heart held off short-handed L.A.

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Take Flight Challenge Day II underway Saturday a.m.

LOS ANGELES – Day II of the second annual Take Flight Challenge, presented by Redondo Union High School, tips off at 11:30 Saturday morning in The Jordan Hangar.

Six high school games are set to be played, with things schedule to be concluded with a 9 o’clock clash between prep school teams from Canada (Orangeville Prep) and San Diego (Balboa Prep).

The respective prep school squads are led by 7-foot junior Thon Maker and 6-10 sophomore DeAndre Ayton, respectively.

Maker didn’t play in his team’s game with Carson’s Future Prep Friday night.

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Ron Massey hoops event debuts Saturday

LONG BEACH, CA – The first-ever Ron Massey Tip-Off Classic will offer a package of six high school hoops games, beginning at 11 a.m. at Jordan High on Saturday.

The first game pits Long Beach Cabrillo against the city’s parochial high school, St. Anthony.

Action continues with Lakewood vs. Goleta Dos Pueblos (12:30 p.m.); Long Beach Wilson vs. Whittier (2); Long Beach Rancho Dominguez vs. Rancho Cucamonga (3:30); Long Beach Jordan vs. Palos Verdes Peninsula (5); and Temecula Valley vs. Orange Lutheran (6:30).

General admission seating goes for $8.

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The 2nd Take Flight Challenge on tap Friday/Saturday

LOS ANGELES – The second annual Take Flight Challenge, presented by Redondo Union High and hosted by The Jordan Hangar, is set to tip off its 10-game, two-day schedule Friday evening at 5:30.

Eight of the games involve 16 of Southern California’s better high school squad, beginning with the 5:30 Friday contest between Anaheim Canyon and Los Angeles Brentwood and wrapping with the 7:30 Saturday night game between the Redondo Sea Hawks and Torrance Bishop Montgomery Knights.

Two games pitting “prep school” teams will be played over the two days as well, too, with Ontario (CAN) Orangeville Prep facing L.A.

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My MaxPreps and Under Armour all-tourney choices

LAGUNA NIGUEL, Ca. – Chatsworth, CA, Sierra Canyon and Los Angeles Fairfax came out of the second to last day of 2014 with championships in two of the most challenge post-Christmas high school tournaments in the country.

Sierra Canyon used two free throws by junior point guard Devearl Ramsey with eight-tenths of a second remaining to edge Mableton, GA, Pebblebrook, 67-66, in the finale of the Open Division of the MaxPreps Holiday Classic at Rancho Mirage.

And Fairfax got 20 points from reserve Lorne Currie and used a 14-0 run in the second half to overcome a seven-point deficit in the third quarter and knocked off Redondo Beach Redondo, 56-51, in the National Division finale of the Under Armour Holiday Classic at Torrey Pines High.

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Fairfax, Redondo take different title game routes

SAN DIEGO – The L.A. Fairfax and Redondo Beach Redondo high teams took remarkably different routes to Tuesday night’s 8 o’clock championship game in the National Division of the 25th Under Armour Holiday Classic at Torrey Pines High.

The Fairfax Lions – heavily favored to win the L.A. City championship in March – got 25 points from senior reserve Lorne Currie and was pretty much in control from Jump Street while knocking off Corona Centennial, one of the better teams in the Southern Section, 69-62.

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Options abound Monday for prep BB action in SoCal

LAGUNA NIGUEL, Ca. – Those wishing to take up-close-and-personal looks at some of Southern California’s best prep teams and players Monday certainly have a multitude of options to choose from among.

Let’s get started with:

*Rancho Mirage High (31001 Rattler Road, Rancho Mirage): This is the site of the Open Division of the MaxPreps Holiday Classic and the championship semifinals Monday evening in that division have the makings of being nothing short of terrific.

It wouldn’t be startling if Etiwanda and Chatsworth Sierra Canyon are battling for the CIF Southern Section’s Open Division championship in March.

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Meet Frank
Frank Burlison

Frank Burlison is a well-regarded basketball writer who was inducted into the U.S. Basketball Writers Association Hall of Fame in 2005. His opinions on the potential of high school and college players are widely respected and sought by college coaches and NBA scouts, personnel directors and general managers from coast to coast. Oh, yes – he can offer plenty of thoughts on movies, television and pop music. Yes, he can rank those, too. Hint: He’s a big The Godfather, Larry Sanders, The Wire and The Beatles loyalist.

To learn more about Frank's scouting services, click here.

Endorsements

“I’ve known Frank since he was a student at Long Beach State and no writer ever worked harder at studying and understanding basketball. When I was coaching I always put more stock into what he said about (high school) players than anyone I knew. As far as I’m concerned, he’s the best there is at evaluating the potential of basketball players.”
Lute Olson, Hall of Fame and NCAA Championship Winning Coach

"I have known Frank for 15 years and there is no one outside of those in the Clippers' organization that I trust more than Frank when it comes to player evaluations."
Neil Olshey, Los Angeles Clippers' Vice President of Basketball Operations

“Frank Burlison has always been a proponent of my talent and, even more so, of my potential – far before it was evident to most. Even as a smaller and determined player who was being overlooked by most high-major colleges and national scouting services, Frank always served as a friendly voice who got me into the door to most events to help me prove my talents.”
Russell Westbrook, the No. 4 overall selection in the 2008 NBA Draft out of UCLA and an all-star guard for the Oklahoma City Thunder

To see what other people in basketball are saying about Frank, click here.