CARROLTON, Texas – More than 200 teams – including one from Mexico – came to the Prime Time Nationals and in the end, the North Texas Shooters beat the Corpus Christi Havoc for the 11/12 Grade title, and the San Antonio Islanders won the 9/10 Grade Division by defeating the Lady Big Dogs 51-39.
Here’s a look at some of the top talent:
Crystal Jones, 5-6 guard, Texas Frontline (Western Hills HS)
I was told she led the area in scoring, and I certainly saw why. She is truly a defensive assignment that could turn into nightmare for many. To sum it up, she’s a track star who can play basketball, so guarding her too close isn’t a good idea, nor is giving her too much room because from 25 feet on in, she can put the ball in the basket
Tayla Taylor, 6-2 forward, Waco Lady Panthers (Marlin HS)
Taylor has moved on from being just athletic and raw. She understood what it was about, she finished consistently and rebounded well on both ends. Her athleticism is through the roof, she is nowhere close to peaking, and I expect her to have a great college career wherever she goes.
Taylor Jackson, 5-6 guard, North Texas Shooters (Frisco Heritage)
Not only did she run her team extremely well, she pushed it by either scoring herself or setting teammates up for scores. Her defense and anticipation on steals was a valuable asset throughout the tournament and she was the sparkplug that made things happen.
Chelsea Warren, 6-0 forward, Dallas Stars (Red Oak HS)
I’ve enjoyed watching this young lady since she was a freshman, and one thing that caught my eye early was her work ethic. Over the last two seasons, she has progressed so much that I’m sometimes speechless as she keeps adding weapons to her arsenal. Not only can she score in the paint with a number of moves, she can face the basket as well and hit the 10-footer. Now she’s added bringing the ball coast to coast and throwing no-looks for assists.
Bernieza Tidwell, 5-6 guard, Arkansas Lady Beast (Hot Springs HS)
Her offense alone would have gotten her on here but Tidwell’s on-ball defense was some of the best I saw all tournament. She’s a point machine and by that I mean she can create points for herself or her teammates in bundles. She’s exciting to watch as she has excellent speed with the ball, not to mention she can score from outside, inside or wherever.
Alexia Torres, 5-6 guard, San Antonio Islanders (Marshall HS)
The Islanders have a solid group of guards that are going places and what I love is that they are somewhat clones as they are interchangeable and do the same things. Torres can handle the ball, run the team (either fast or slow) and score -- and I mean from way downtown or to the rim in traffic.
Tajshia Moore, 6-0 post, Texas Ice (Arlington HS)
Moore can rebound and block shots, and at her size along with her frame, that will get her to the next level somewhere. What will take her even higher up the ladder is her strength and ability to dominate in the paint for easy baskets. At times, she’s virtually unstoppable and she also has a nice touch from the free-throw line which is an added bonus
Victoria Blankenship, 6-0 forward, Corpus Christi Havoc (West OSO HS)
Beast, relentless, energized mindset and skilled are some of the ingredients used that compile her game. If there was an all-tournament team or award, she would definitely be on it because when you talk about putting your team on your back, Blankenship is up for the challenge. She plays both ends one way -- hard -- and reminds me of a female Moses Malone
Erin Sanchez, 5-6 guard, Lady Big Dogs (Irving HS)
When you talk about players being in a zone, Sanchez was not only in it, she showed she could live there. In the quarterfinals, her scoring is why they made it to the championship as she was simply on fire, knocking down threes in bunches. She can also get to the basket and more important, finish strong even after taking a bump
Stephanie Jackson, 5-7 guard, Cy Fair Nike AC (McKinney North HS)
Jackson is on a team full of D1 players and she’s also entering high school with quite a few as well. However, what I’ve seen over the course of three short months is not only progression, but basketball IQ going to yet another level. She was already good, and I was sold on her playing D1 but after this weekend, she has the ability and mentality to go as high as she wants. She is the silent assassin who scores in the flow and before you know it, she’s dropped close to 20 on you