Lexie Brown of North Gwinnett was named the Naples Holiday Shootout Tournament MVP after averaging 23.5 points per game and leading the Bulldogs to the title. (Photo by Kelly Kline)
Lexie Brown of North Gwinnett was named the Naples Holiday Shootout Tournament MVP after averaging 23.5 points per game and leading the Bulldogs to the title. (Photo by Kelly Kline)

Naples Holiday Shootout All-Tournament Team: Brown Leads the Way

Staff Writer
January 2, 2013 - 4:17pm

This year’s Naples Holiday Shootout held at Barron Collier High School in Naples, Florida, from December 26-29 contained one of the best sixteen-team fields of this school year.  Thus it is not surprising that the players from the event represent similar superior quality.  Full Court national evaluators Bob Corwin, Kelvin Powell, Dan Olson and Kelly Kline at the event and selected the following players to represent the Full Court All-Tournament Team (which differs from the All-Tournament Team selected on site by the local Naples media)

Full Court Tournament MVP

Lexie Brown, 5-9 Point Guard, 2013, North Gwinnett High School, Suwanee, GA

To some in the national media, Brown is just one of the seven Gwinnett County seniors --perhaps the most talented county for BCS signees in the 2013 class -- to sign with a major division one school.  Diamond DeShields and Kaela Davis may rank higher on the Full Court Fresh 50 and elsewhere, but it was Lexie Brown who was named the Gwinnett County High School Player of the Year last season by the local media, who saw them all on a regular basis. What endears people to Brown is that she shows up every day, tries to make her teammates around her better, is not afraid to take ‘big’ shots, and puts team success above individual achievement.  In Naples, the Maryland signee averaged 23.5 points per game while spending a large portion of time protecting the basketball and playing hard on defense.  Her greatest offensive skill is her ability to hit the three-ball while still being able to keep the opposition honest via the drive.  

Full Court All-Tournament Team (in alphabetical order)

Stephanie Amichia, 6-1 Center/Forward, 2014, North Gwinnett High School, Suwanee, GA

Every team could use a grinder and that is what Amichia does for the Bulldogs.  She gets key defensive rebounds and earns her team additional possessions via offensive rebounds.  A team largely devoted to outside shooting, she often has to get ‘hers’ via put-backs.  It was not so much her scoring but her interior defense and rebounding that brought her to this list.  North Gwinnett would not be the same team without her.

Haley Clark, 5-9 Point Guard, 2014, Edgewater High School, Orlando, FL

Clark was just one of three significant offensive threats in the Eagles attack while in Naples.  However, as lead guard, she was an island of relative calm in the often turbulent Edgewater attack which can be very error-prone at times.  With medium build, Clark handles and distributes the ball well.  To score, she is primarily a driver with the perimeter shot as her second option.  In Naples, she averaged 13.7 points per game while trying to keep her team’s offense on stable footing. 

Erykah Davenport, 6-2 Center/Forward, 2014, Tucker High School, Tucker, GA

Davenport continues to impress scouts and could threaten the 2014 Full Court Fresh 50 when it is revised next spring.  With medium-solid frame, she is a strong in-the-paint defender and rebounder.  Offensively, she scores mid-key and shooting the ball off the catch but driving to the rim on occasion.  Starting slowly with just eight points in the first round loss to Whitney Young, she finished up averaging 15.25 points per game. 

Danielle Edwards, 5-6 Point Guard, 2015, McDonogh School, Owings Mills, MD

Edwards, like the team of Eagles that she leads, is young in her position.  She handles the ball adequately and has above average basketball IQ.  Offensively, driving appears to be her best option to score although she hit several threes during the Naples event where she averaged 15.25 points per game.

#11 Gabriella Hanson drives to the basket. (Photo by Kelly Kline)

Gabriella Hanson, 5-11 Guard, 2013, Troy High School, Fullerton, CA

I wasn’t the only who noticed that this Oregon State signee resembled Diana Taurasi in body type (solid build with wide shoulders), height, body movements and style (not level) of play on the wing.  She gracefully slashes along the baseline, hitting jump shots of the bounce or pass.  Hanson, who is a member of the Swedish National Team program, averaged 12.5 points per game in Naples. 

Linnae Harper, 5-8 Guard, 2013, Whitney Young High School, Chicago, IL

Harper, ranked number seven in the Full Court Fresh 50, may be the best high school player in the class of 2013.  That’s saying best now without regard to college success which is what the Fresh 50 is primarily concerned with.  The Kentucky signee averaged 28.75 points per game in Naples and is relentless at both ends.  Turn the ball over at one end; she will go all out to get it back at the other end.  A power guard deadly mid-key in, she is improving the accuracy of her perimeter stroke.  Undefeated coming into Naples, Harper more than did her part but did not have enough support as the Lady Dolphins finished with an even 2-2 record. 

Shanice Johnson, 6-1 Forward, 2013, Cardinal O’Hara High School, Philadelphia, PA

Johnson has a medium-solid build and combines above average athleticism with a willingness to play hard in the paint, step out to pop on the perimeter or drive to the basket from the high post. The Delaware commit takes what the defense gives her not forcing shots.  She averaged 12.25 points per game in her ‘steady Eddie’ performance in Naples.  

Emily Lines, 6-1 Forward, 2015, First Baptist Academy, Naples, FL

First Baptist and its star Lines, the reigning local area Collier County player of the year, had a tough assignment being a small school playing in an event against larger schools with more talented teams.  Collier County appears to crank out about one division one signee per year from its ten (public and private) high schools and Lines will likely be the one for 2015.  She has a high basketball IQ and good hands.  In this event she did a lot of three-point shooting highlighted by her four treys in a 21-point losing effort versus defending 6A Florida State Champion Orlando Edgewater, a much larger school.  

Nia Marshall, 6-0 Forward, 2013, Hathaway Brown School, Shaker Heights, OH

With a fairly solid build, Marshall is your face-up/post-up power forward.   She also can take the ball to the basket from the high post.  In Naples, the Cornell signee posted 16 points per game.  

Je'Taun Rouse of Marist high school average 21 points per game during the Naples Holiday Shootout. (Photo by Kelly Kline)

Je’Taun Rouse, 5-8 Guard, 2013, Marist High School, Chicago, IL

Need scoring?  You came to the right place!  This Marquette signee does not hesitate to shoot threes, mid-range jumpers or drive to the basket.  At times, she could be accused of taking a high volume of shots to score her points, she averaged 21 points per game in this event.  

Vanessa Smith, 6-1 forward, 2013, Hathaway Brown School, Shaker Heights, OH

With a medium, lean build; Smith is one of those do-a-bit-of-everything players.  On a given day, she can lead her team in rebounds and at the same time help bring the ball up the court.  On defense, she is an imposing figure on the top of the Blazer 1-2-2 zone.  In the semi-final win, the Princeton signee went six-for-six from the foul line in the fourth quarter to help her team edge Whitney Young 50-46.  For the event she averaged 15.5 points per game.   

Tianna Tarter, 5-6 point guard, 2014, Science Hill High School, Johnson City, TN

Tarter’s style reflects what her Lady Hilltoppers are like as a team, namely ‘balanced.’  She does a lot decently but no one thing jumps out at you as a ‘wow.’  She can shoot the three, drive it to the hole and has a pull-up jumper to go along with above average quickness and basketball IQ.   To keep everything in balance, for the four-game event, she averaged 10 points per game, the same as the number she wears.

Peyton Whitted, 6-3 Forward, 2013, North Gwinnett High School, Suwannee, GA

Whitted (a Penn State signee) continues to toughen her game.  As a younger player, it was thought she might be allergic to ‘paint’ as she repeatedly settled for long perimeter shots.  Now a senior, she shows greater variety in her game, shooting, at distance as before but also in the mid-range and getting to the basket.  At Naples, she averaged 13.75 points per game in Naples.