2015 Dick’s Nationals Preview

This year’s Dick’s Nationals has plenty of story lines as Oak Hill Academy (VA) comes into the event undefeated and ranked as the top seed facing off against 8 seed Wings Academy (NY). #2 seed Montverde Academy (FL) will open the event against #7 seed Greensboro Day (NC) as Montverde will look to set a tournament record with three consecutive Dick’s Nationals/NHSI Titles. In the short history of the event, this year’s #6 seed Findlay Prep (NV) leads all schools with three Dick’s National/NHSI Titles. They will start their quest for a fourth Dick’s Nationals Title as they take on #3 seed Blanche Ely (FL) who come into the event undefeated. The #4 seed in this year’s event will be the only team to beat Montverde on the year, Wheeler (GA) facing off against #5 seed Huntington Prep (WV), returning to the event for their second consecutive appearance.



Thursday, April 2nd

Quarterfinal Games:

12:00 PM #3 Blanche Ely (FL) vs #6 Findlay Prep (NV) (ESPNU)

2:00 PM: #4 Wheeler (GA) vs #5 Huntington Prep (WV) (ESPNU)

4:00 PM: #2 Montverde Academy (FL) vs #7 Greensboro Day (NC) (ESPNU)

6:00 PM: #1 Oak Hill Academy (VA) vs #8 Wings Academy (NY) (ESPNU)


Friday, April 3rd


3:00 PM: Findlay Prep/Blanche Ely winner vs Montverde/Greensboro Day winner (ESPN2)

5:00 PM: Wheeler/Huntington Prep winner vs Oak Hill/Wings Academy winner (ESPN2)


Saturday, April 4th

Championship Game

12:00 PM: at Madison Square Garden (ESPN)

***Quarterfinal and Semifinal Games take place at Christ the King High School



First Round Breakdown:


1 Oak Hill Academy (VA) 45-0
8 Wings Academy (NY) 28-2

Keys to Game:

Wings Academy (NY) big man Jessie Govan will need a big game for his team to compete with an ultra-talented Oak Hill Academy (VA) who comes into the event undefeated. The matchup to watch in the game is 2015 6′ 11″ Georgetown commit Jessie Govan vs 2015 6′ 11″ Ohio State commit Daniel Giddens. This matchup will be very intriguing to look at two big men, with good size, who will be welcome additions to current NCAA tournament teams next season. The other matchup that will have an impact on the game is 2015 Missouri commit Terrence Phillips who will run the point guard against Wings Academy’s 2015 Hofstra commit Desure Buie. Phillips and Buie will create a great matchup at the point guard spot as both players will look to control the tempo of the game and lead their teams to victory. The x-factor in this game and in this tournament however for Oak Hill Academy will be Dwayne Bacon. Bacon is a scoring machine and will need to be a constant source of offense if Oak Hill wants to win its first ever Dick’s Nationals.

Prediction: Oak Hill Academy (VA) over Wings Academy (NY) 66-53



4 Wheeler (GA) 30-2
5 Huntington Prep (WV) 31-2

Keys to the Game:

The matchup to watch in this game is the one at the wing position as one a top 10 2016 prospect Miles Bridges faces off against #4 2015 prospect Jaylen Brown. Both Brown and Bridges are very important to their teams success and if Bridges is assigned to guarding Brown he will certainly have the most important defensive task for Huntington. The key to Huntington Prep getting the win against a tough Wheeler team is getting their big men involved early and often against the Wildcats undersized front line. Unsigned 2015 SF Jaylen Brown will need 30+ for his team to capture the first round win here.

Prediction: Huntington Prep (WV) over Wheeler (GA) 70-69



3 Blanche Ely (FL) 28-0
6 Findlay Prep (NV) 28-2

Keys to the Game:

Blanche Ely (FL) will come into this year’s event with their highest seed in event history and will face off against a Findlay Prep (NV) team who hasn’t won an event title since 2012. This Findlay Prep team has special talent and is definitely a great “upset” choice here. The key to this game will be how hard is Findlay Prep willing to scrap to end Blanche Ely’s perfect season. A matchup to watch in this one is in the backcourt between Blanche Ely’s talented senior’s LaQuincy Rideau and Javon Heastie going up against top junior point guard Derryck Thorton and #7 overall senior Allonzo Trier who is committed to Arizona. Another fun matchup to watch for is down low between two very athletic post players. 6′ 9″ 2015 Auburn commit Horace Spencer will face off against 2015 6′ 7″ Therrell Gosier for Blanche Ely. In the end I see Findlay Prep having too much talent and will escape with a narrow victory.

Prediction: Findlay Prep (NV) over Blanche Ely (FL) 67-63



2 Montverde Academy (FL) 28-1
7 Greensboro Day (NC) 33-2

Keys to the Game:

Montverde Academy (FL) will be hungry looking for their third consecutive Dick’s Nationals/NHSI Title behind senior leader Ben Simmons. Simmons, a 6′ 9″ SF is top prospect in the class of 2015 and will look to provide more evidence of his dominance on the big stage by leading his team to another title. Simmons was on teams with Dakari Johnson, Devin Williams, and Kasey Hill two years ago and D’Angelo Russell last year which won the titles and this year his role will be a lot larger in the run. Greensboro Day (NC) won this year’s North Carolina state title over Harry Giles and Wesleyan Christian (NC) and only have two losses on the year. They are a team who really likes to get up and defend and will look to create problems for Ben Simmons and company in their first step in their quest for a 3-peat. Don’t expect this game to be too high scoring as Greensboro Day will certainly look to slow the ball down and make it a half-court game. Montverde can take advantage of playing a half-court game by using their height advantage to get easy buckets down low.

Prediction: Montverde Academy (FL) over Greensboro Day (NC) 65-51



Event History:

2014: Montverde Academy (FL)

2013: Montverde Academy (FL)

2012: Findlay Prep (NV)

2011: Montrose Christian (MD)

2010: Findlay Prep (NV)

2009: Findlay Prep (NV)



2015 Players to Watch:

#1 6′ 9″ SF Ben Simmons: (LSU) -Montverde
#4 6′ 7″ SF Jaylen Brown: (Undecided) -Wheeler
#7 6′ 4″ SG Allonzo Trier: (Arizona) -Findlay Prep
#10 6′ 11″ PF Daniel Giddens: (Ohio State) -Oak Hill
#16 6′ 6″ SG Dwayne Bacon: (Florida State) -Oak Hill
#21 6′ 10″ PF Thomas Bryant: (Undecided) -Huntington Prep
6′ 8″ PF Horace Spencer: (Auburn) -Findlay Prep
6′ 11″ PF Jessie Govan: (Georgetown) -Wings Academy
6′ 5″ SG Shembari Phillips: (Tennessee) -Wheeler
6′ 9″ PF Ted Kapita: (Arkansas) -Huntington Prep
6′ 5″ SG Andrew Fleming: (Iowa) -Oak Hill
6′ 10″ C Levi Cook: (Undecided) -Huntington Prep
5′ 11″ PG Terrence Phillips: (Missouri) -Oak Hill
6′ 8″ PF Noah Dickerson: (Florida) -Montverde
6′ 1″ PG Desure Buie: (Hofstra) -Wings Academy
5′ 10″ PG Darius Moore: (Presbyterian) -Blanche Ely
6′ 7″ PF Therrell Gosier: (Undecided) -Blanche Ely
6′ 6″ PF Peter Agba: (Akron) -Greensboro Day
6′ 1″ PG LaQuincy Rideau: (Undecided) -Blanche Ely


2016 Players to Watch:

6′ 2″ PG Derryck Thorton Jr -Findlay Prep
6′ 7″ SF Miles Bridges -Huntington Prep
6′ 7″ PF Joe Hampton -Oak Hill Academy
6′ 4″ PG Curtis Jones -Huntington Prep
6′ 3″ PG Howard Washington -Montverde Academy
6′ 8″ SF Justin Jackson: (UNLV) -Findlay Prep
6′ 3″ SG Cameron Jordan -Wheeler


2017 & 2018 Players to Watch:

2018  6′ 9″ SF EJ Montgomery -Montverde Academy
2017 6′ 8″ PF PJ Washington -Findlay Prep
2017 6′ 1″ PG Lindell Wigginton -Oak Hill Academy
2017 6′ 8″ PF O’Shae Brissett -Findlay Prep
2017 6′ 9″ SF Karim Ezzeddine -Huntington Prep
2017 6′ 6″ SF Donnie Tillman -Findlay Prep
2018 6′ 1″ SG Will Dillard -Greensboro Day
2018 6′ 3″ PG Jonathan Kabongo -Huntington Prep
2017 6′ 4″ SG Travon Mayo -Greensboro Day
2017 6′ 2″ PG Darius Perry -Wheeler



2015 Dick’s Nationals year’s field:

#1 Oak Hill Academy (VA)

Record: 45-0

Head Coach: Steve Smith

Top Scorer: Dwayne Bacon

Signature Wins: Bishop O’Dowd (CA) x2, Wesleyan Christian (NC), Cape Henry (VA), Sierra Canyon (CA), Villa Angela-St Joseph (OH)

Tournament History:  6th appearance, 6-5 overall

Key Contributors:

2015 6’ 10” C Daniel Giddens: (Ohio State)

2016 6’ 7” PF Joe Hampton: (Undecided)

2015 6’ 5” SG Andrew Fleming: (Iowa)

2015 6’ 6” SG Dwayne Bacon: (Florida State)

2015 5’ 11” PG Terrence Phillips: (Missouri)

2015 6’ 5” SF Josh Reaves: (Penn State)

2016 6’ 9” PF Khadim Sy: (Undecided)

2017 6’ 1” PG Lidell Wigginton (Undecided)



#2 Montverde Academy (FL)

Record: 28-1

Head Coach: Kevin Boyle

Top Scorer: Ben Simmons

Signature Wins: Jonesboro (GA), Plano West (TX), Bishop O’Dowd (CA), Wayne (OH), Pebblebrook (GA), Roselle Catholic (NJ)

Losses: Wheeler (GA)

Tournament History: 5th appearance 10-2 overall, 2 Championships (2013, 2014)

Key Contributors:

2015 7’ 0” C Doral Moore: (Wake Forest)

2015 6’ 8” PF Noah Dickerson: (Florida)

2015 6’ 9” SF Ben Simmons: (LSU)

2015 6’ 2” SG Marcel Ponitka: (Undecided)

2016 6’ 3” PG Howard Washington: (Undecided)

2018 6’ 9” SF EJ Montgomery: (Undecided)

2015 6’ 7” SF Marquez Letcher-Ellis: (Rice)

2015 7’ 4” C Jean Marc Koumadje: (Florida State)



#3 Blanche Ely (FL)

Record: 28-0 *Florida State Title

Head Coach: Melvin Randall

Signature Wins: Norland (FL), Cardinal Gibbons, North Port (FL), Dwyer (FL)

Tournament History: 3rd appearance, 0-2 overall

Key Contributors:

2015 6′ 7″ PF Therrell Gosier: (Undecided)

2015 6′ 2″ SG Diandre Wilson: (Undecided)

2015 5′ 10″ PG Javon Heastie: (Undecided)

2015 6′ 1″ PG LaQuincy Rideau: (Undecided)

2016 6′ 4″ SF Trevor Goodrum: (Undecided)

2017 6′ 0″ PG Keonn Scott: (Undecided)



#4 Wheeler (GA)

Record: 30-2

Head Coach: Doug Lipscomb

Top Scorer: Jaylen Brown

Signature Wins: Wesleyan Christian (NC), Montverde Academy (FL), Central Catholic (OR), Pebblebrook (GA)

Losses: West Linn (OR), Bishop O’Dowd (CA)

Tournament History: 1st appearance

Key Contributors:

2015 6’ 7” PF Hakem Anchrum: (Undecided)

2015 6’ 7” SF Jaylen Brown: (Undecided)

2015 6’ 5” SG Shembari Phillips: (Tennessee)

2016 6’ 3” SG Cameron Jordan: (Undecided)

2016 5’ 10” PG Makhai Eastmond: (Undecided)

2017 6’ 2” PG Darius Perry: (Undecided)



#5 Huntington Prep (WV) 

Record: 31-2

Head Coach: Arkell Bruce

Top Scorer: Thomas Bryant

Signature Wins: Life Center Academy (NJ), Arlington Country Day (FL), West Oaks (FL), Our Savior New American (NY)

Losses: Quality Education (NC), Callaway (MS)

Tournament History: 2nd appearance, 1-1 overall

Key Contributors:

2015 6’ 10” C Levi Cook: (Undecided)

2015 6’ 11” PF Thomas Bryant: (Undecided)

2016 6’ 7” SF Miles Bridges: (Undecided)

2016 6’ 1” SG Ivan Gandia: (Undecided)

2016 6’ 4” PG Curtis Jones: (Undecided)

2015 6’ 9” PF Ted Kapita: (Arkansas)

2015 6’ 3” SG Ronshad Allen-Shabazz: (Appalachian State)

2015 6’ 9” SF Karim Ezzeddine: (Undecided)



#6 Findlay Prep (NV)

Record: 28-2

Head Coach: Andy Johnson

Top Scorer: Allonzo Trier

Signature Wins: Our Savior New American (NY), Stevenson (IL), Bishop Gorman (NV)

Losses: Wayne (OH), Canyon Springs (NV)

Tournament History: 7th appearance, 11-3 overall, 3 championships (2009, 2010, 2011)

Key Contributors:

2015 6’ 8” PF Horace Spencer: (Auburn)

2017 6’ 8” PF PJ Washington: (Undecided)

2016 6’ 8” SF Justin Jackson: (UNLV)

2015 6’ 5” SG Allonzo Trier: (Arizona)

2016 6’ 2” PG Derryck Thorton Jr: (Undecided)

2017 6’ 8” PF O’Shae Brissett: (Undecided)

2017 6’ 6” SF Donnie Tillman: (Undecided)

2016 6’ 9” PF Khalea Turner: (Undecided)



#7 Greensboro Day (NC)

Record: 33-2 *North Carolina State Title

Head Coach: Fred Johnson

Signature Wins: Providence Day (NC) 2x, Wesleyan Christian (NC) 2x, Davidson Day (NC)

Losses: Davidson Day (NC), Wesleyan Christian (NC)

Tournament History: First Appearance

Key Contributors:

2015 6′ 6″ Peter Agba: (Akron)

2017 6′ 5″ JP Moorman: (Undecided)

2017 6′ 4″ Travon Mayo: (Undecided)

2018 6′ 1″ Will Dillard: (Undecided)

2015 5′ 10″ Darius Moore: (Presbyterian)

2018 6′ 5″ John Newman: (Undecided)

2015 6′ 3″ Trevor Mayo: (Undecided)



#8 Wings Academy (NY)

Record: 28-2

Head Coach: Billy Turnage

Signature Wins: Construction (NY), Jefferson (NY), Cardozo (NY), Brentwood (NY) 

Losses: Roman Catholic (PA), Cardozo (NY)

Tournament History: First Appearances

Key Contributors:

2015 6′ 11″ C Jessie Govan: (Georgetown)

2017 6′ 5″ PF Jose Perez: (Undecided)

2017 6′ 1″ SG Kamissoko Boubacar: (Undecided)

2015 6′ 1″ SG Efrain DeJesus: (Undecided)

2015 6′ 1″ PG Desure Buie: (Hofstra)

2016 6′ 8″ PF Jamar Brown: (Undecided)

2016 6′ 3″ SG Kevin Saylor: (Undecided)

2 Responses to 2015 Dick’s Nationals Preview

  1. Gerald King says:

    Is this field based on what you THINK? I highly doubt that DICKS would get rid of one of the undefeated & top 5 teams in the nation (No. 5 Blanche Ely) according to USAToday.


  2. Pingback: Wings Academy to Compete in Dick’s Sporting Goods Nationals in New York | ZagsBlog.com

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