NORTH BETHESDA, Md. -- Top seed Montrose Christian (Md.) flexed its muscle on Day 2 in the semifinals at the ESPN RISE National High School Invitational (NHSI) in an 83-61 thrashing of Boys and Girls and showed why it was the favorite coming into the event. The victory sets up a No.1-versus-No. 2 showdown in the championship game after Oak Hill Academy (Va.), led by Quinn Cook's 29 points, took care of business against Dwyer (Fla.) 76-73. The game airs Saturday on ESPN at 2 p.m. ET.
Quinn Cook (Hyattsville, Md./Oak Hill Academy)
2011, PG, 6-foot-1, 180 pounds
Cook was dialed in again from the start in leading his team to the championship game; he handled Dwyer's relentless pressure, knocking down important shots and free throws when the game was on the line. Saturday's matchup against Montrose Christian's Tyrone Johnson (Plainfield, N.J./Montrose Christian), a Villanova signee, should be a treat for all in attendance as two of the top point guards in the nation challenge each other.
Justin Anderson (Rockville, Md./Montrose Christian Academy)
2012, SF, 6-5, 210 pounds
The future Maryland Terrapin, who led his team with 18 points, has always been a high-energy player who uses his length and explosiveness to impact a game defensively, on the offensive boards and in transition. However, when his perimeter shot is dropping, like it was in the semifinals, his game goes to a whole new level. If he continues to improve his consistency from behind the arc his stock jumps exponentially.
Victor Adams (Palm Beach Gardens, Fla./Dwyer)
2011, SG, 6-3, 165 pounds
Adams played a solid floor game on Day 1 of the event, but was content to let Jacoby Brissett have the spotlight during Dwyer's win over two-time defending NHSI champion Findlay Prep. On Day 2 it was Adams' turn to lead the program. With Oak Hill doing a nice job planning for Brissett and powerful center Joell James in foul trouble, Adams took over and put his team in position to win the game. Although the effort came up short, Adams impressed the scouts in attendance and should see his recruitment pick up.
Player to watch
Jordan Adams (Lawrenceville, Ga./Oak Hill Academy)
2012, SF, 6-5, 220-pounds
Adams was outstanding shooting the ball for the second day in a row. It will be interesting to see his development during the spring and summer as the combo forward is a deceptive athlete who understands where to pick his spots, has a great stroke from behind the 3-point arc and causes matchup problems when Oak Hill plays a four-guard lineup.
• Montrose Christian 2012 power forward Michael Carrera continues to improve his stock, scoring 15 points and dominating the offensive glass while pulling down 17 rebounds.
• Johnson has been a steady hand for Montrose Christian; he is great at changing speeds in both transition or in the half court and showed very good decision-making ability.
• Oak Hill's Damien Wilson is a left-handed transition specialist who is almost impossible to keep out of the paint. The 6-foot-4 wing slithers through seams to finish or draws fouls. He needs to continue to improve his perimeter game, but he is hard to guard.
• The much-anticipated matchup between elite big men James and A.J. Hammons (Carmel, Ind./Oak Hill) never materialized, as James found himself in foul trouble and played limited minutes. James must learn how to adjust his game to the officials.
Mike LaPlante, a recruiting coordinator for ESPN Recruiting, has over 20 years of coaching and recruiting experience.