Team USA is currently holding their U17 trials out in Colorado Springs.
33 players from the Class of 2015 and 2016 were invited to try out for the team that will be traveling to Dubai for the World Championships in August, and on Saturday afternoon, the first round of cuts were made.
MORE: Highlights from the trials
Here are the 17 players remaining:
- Tyus Battle (Gill St. Bernard’s School/ Edison, N.J./2016)
- Thomas Bryant (Bishop Kearney H.S./Rochester, N.Y./2015)
- Henry Ellenson (Rice Lake H.S./Rice Lake, Wis./2015)
- Terrence Ferguson (Prime Prep Academy/Flower Mound, Texas/2016)
- De’Aaron Fox (Cypress Lakes H.S./Katy, Texas/2016)
- Harry Giles (Wesleyan Christian Academy/Winston-Salem, N.C./2016)
- Mustapha Heron (Sacred Heart H.S./West Haven, Conn./2016)
- Josh Jackson (Consortium College Prep H.S./ Southfield, Mich./2016)
- V.J. King (St. Vincent-St. Mary H.S./Akron, Ohio/2016)
- T.J. Leaf (Foothills Christian H.S./Lakeside, Calif./2016)
- Malik Newman (Callaway H.S./Jackson, Miss./2015)
- Ivan Rabb (Bishop O’Dowd H.S./ Oakland, Calif./2015)
- Devearl Ramsey (Sierra Canyon H.S./Los Angeles, Calif./2016)
- Diamond Stone (Dominican H.S./Milwaukee, Wis./2015)
- Caleb Swanigan (Homestead H.S./Fort Wayne, Ind./2015)
- Jayson Tatum (Chaminade College Prep/St. Louis, Mo./2016)
- Derryck Thornton (Findlay Prep, Nev./Simi Valley, Calif./2016)
MORE: Full coverage of the July Live Period
There are a couple of noticeable absences, however. The most exciting player in high school basketball, Arkansas native Malik Monk, didn’t make it through the first round of cuts. He is a big time scoring guard and a high-flying athlete, but as explosive as he is as a scorer, he is equally inconsistent.
The other surprise was that point guard Dennis Smith Jr. was sent home. Smith, who plays his high school ball in North Carolina, shot up through the rankings to become a top five player in the nation in the Class of 2016.
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. — He’s back.
For the first time this season — and for the first time in more than a year that he hasn’t been hampered with some kind of foot or ankle injury — Marcus Paige donned a North Carolina jersey, and it didn’t take him long to find the form that made him the NBCSports.com Preseason National Player of the Year.
On the first Tar Heel possession, Paige came off of a ball-screen, drove the lane and found Kennedy Meeks at the rim for a layup. Not 30 seconds later, he came off of a down screen and buried a three. Paige would finish with 20 points and five assists as No. 9 North Carolina put together a fairly resounding win over No. 2 Maryland in the Dean Dome on Tuesday night, winning 89-81.
Paige finished 7-for-12 from the floor and 4-for-5 from beyond the arc, hitting a number of threes in the second half that helped hold off a Maryland push sparked by their own all-american point guard, Melo Trimble.
Trimble was erratic early on, committing three turnovers in the first six minutes and eight on the night, but it was his play at the end of the first half and early second half that kept North Carolina from blowing their doors. At one point, Maryland was down 32-19 and in danger of getting run out of Tobacco Road.
In total, Trimble finished with 23 points and 12 assists, hitting four big threes during that stretch. He either scored or assisted on 11 of Maryland’s first 12 second half field goals.
As good as Paige was, the bigger story may actually be Joel Berry II. He took two dumb threes in the first half — which played a role in Maryland being able to make this a game — and he missed a few free throws late, but overall he was terrific. He finished with 14 points and five assists, making 3-of-5 threes and turning the ball over just twice. He’s clearly beat Nate Britt out at the point guard spot, and his ability to take pressure off of Paige as a secondary ball-handler and playmaker is huge.
(More to come from Chapel Hill…)
North Carolina is hosting No. 2 Maryland in a heated contest in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge. Terps sophomore guard Melo Trimble is playing very well and part of his performance was dropping North Carolina’s Nate Britt with a crossover in the second half.
(H/T: The Cauldron)