Boys BB: All-State 2nd, 3rd 2019

Scotty Pippen Jr. was classy, controlled point guard leader for Sierra Canyon, but also had flashes of scoring punch. At right is Second Team Overall Duke-bound Rejean “Boogie” Ellis of San Diego Mission Bay. Photos: OregonLive.com & Twitter.com.

Here’s the place to see all of the writeups for those who are second team overall and third team overall on the 41st annual Cal-Hi Sports All-State Boys Basketball Teams. The second team features the third player from Sierra Canyon (Chatsworth) among the first 20, two more super talents from the Class of 2020 and two of the best Grid-Hoop standouts we’ve covered in many years. For the third team, there’s two players who made it from Bakersfield, plus twin brothers from a team that was undefeated for the regular season.

For the all-time archive of every Cal-Hi Sports All-State elite/overall team for boys that has been chosen, CLICK HERE.

RELATED All-State Boys Basketball All-State Teams: First Team Elite | By Divisions | Underclass (Gold Club) | Final List of Nominees (Gold Club)

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This was all-state hoops patch for last year. This year’s patches are similar and were delivered this week to our partners at BillyTees.com.

2019 CAL-HI SPORTS ALL-STATE
ELITE BOYS BASKETBALL TEAMS

SECOND TEAM OVERALL

G ­- Sedrick Altman (Colony, Ontario) 6-3 Sr.
It was a fantastic season for the one the California basketball community calls “Agent Zero,” a nickname fist coined for former NBA player Gilbert Arenas. Just like the former Van Nuys Grant all-stater, Altman got the nickname not only because of his uniform number, but also for his vast offensive repertoire and shot-making ability. Arenas had his number retired at Grant, and perhaps CoHi will one day retire Altman’s after leading the team to a CIF Southern Section and a SoCal D2 title. Altman, and his team in general, didn’t shoot the rock as well as they wanted to in the D2 state title game, but that doesn’t diminish the terrific individual season the muscular guard had for a 31-6 team. Altman had 21 points and seven rebounds in the CIFSS Division 2A title game, 41 points in a D2 SoCal regional semifinal victory over Notre Dame of Riverside and 34 in the regional victory over Rancho Cucamonga. The CIFSS 2A Player of the Year averaged 28 ppg, 7.1 rpg, 3.1 apg, and 2.5 spg and proved to be one of the most exciting and explosive guards in the state who some think will further blossom at the next level. Altman is headed to Pepperdine.

Marcus Bagley breaks free for Sheldon playing on the same NBA arena floor where his older brother, Marvin, plays for the Sacramento Kings. Photo: Willie Eashman.

F ­- Marcus Bagley (Sheldon, Sacramento)
6-8 Jr.

It’s not easy to separate individual honors for deep NorCal clubs such as Sheldon and Modesto Christian, but it’s clear Bagley is the top honors candidate in the traditional NorCal region. In fact, if the CIF Central Section was part of SoCal for individual honors, Bagley would be the NorCal POY choice after helping the Huskies to the NorCal Open crown. The younger brother of Sacramento Kings power forward and 2017 all-stater Marvin Bagley, Marcus was named co-Player of the Year by the Sacramento Bee along with teammate Justin Nguyen. While Nguyen was the emotional leader and led the team in scoring on a few occasions, Bagley was the leading scorer at 19.9 ppg while also grabbing 7.9 rpg. He’s not quite the one-and-done prospect that his older brother is, but Bagley is a physical wing who can handle the ball and shoot it from the outside while playing solid defense. Known for his versatility, Bagley fit in well with a group that was already considered one of the two best units in the region without him and he could develop into a Mr. Basketball candidate next year provided Sheldon makes another deep playoff run.

G ­- Jordan Brinson (Westchester, Los Angeles) 6-3 Sr.
Not much separates Brinson from Fairfax’s Ethan Anderson, other than Westchester was unable to beat its league rivals this season in three tries and the fact Brinson is a bit more of a late-bloomer. Regardless, Brinson had a big-time individual season and led the Comets to a 24-5 record and state No. 7 ranking. The L.A. Daily Breeze Player of the Year is a typical player who develops under legendary coach Ed Azzam: he didn’t come in with a lot of fanfare but developed into a D1 guard (offers from UAB-Birmingham, Fordham, Southern Utah) over the past two seasons. In fact, Azzam thinks Pac-12 coaches are missing the boat with him. Brinson worked hard on his body and explosiveness and peaked at the right time. Brinson was named MVP of the Westchester Tip-Off Classic and the Beach Ball Classic in South Carolina and was at his best when he hit for 29 points in the Comets’ upset win over Rancho Christian in the SoCal Open regional playoffs. He went for 24 points in the regionals against eventual CIF Open champ Sierra Canyon and averaged 20 ppg, 8 rpg and 6 apg while earning Most Outstanding Player of the Western League after sharing MVP honors in 2018 with Fairfax’s Jamal Hartwell (George Mason).

G — Josh Christopher (Mayfair, Lakewood) 6-5 Jr.
We thought about placing Christopher in the same group with Sherman Oak Notre Dame’s Ziaire Williams, as they are both rated among the top juniors in the country right below Evan Mobley and Jalen Green, but we decided to move Christopher up to the second unit because of his local honors. The shooting guard with a big smile and personality was selected to the 10-man L.A. Times all-star team and was also selected CIFSS Division 2AA Player of the Year over first-teamer Jamie Jaquez. The younger brother of former Compton Dominguez and Mayfair standout Pat Christopher is an explosive shot-maker and impact player opposing defenses must always account for. He finished the season with averages of 25.0 ppg, 7.8 rpg, 5.2 apg and 3.2 spg for a 26-8 club that won the CIFSS D2AA crown. He went for 24 points, 14 rebounds and 6 assists in the section title game and had 44 in the loss to eventual D1 state champ Chino Hills.

G ­- Rejean Ellis (Mission Bay, San Diego) 6-3 Sr.
A repeat second team selection, Ellis is one of the most talented guards in the state and on his way to Duke, the first all-stater from San Diego to sign with the Blue Devils since San Pasqual’s Erik Meek in 1991. Last season, he led the Bucs to their first CIF San Diego Section Open Division crown and first league title in 29 years, but did not repeat as all-CIF San Diego Section Player of the Year. That honor went to fellow second-teamer Bryce Pope of Torrey Pines. Still, “Boogie” is a deserving repeat selection, as he averaged 25.1 ppg (up from 24 ppg last season) against the most difficult schedule of any team in the section. The scoring point guard had some big games against the best competition, hitting for 43 points vs. Seattle O’Dea and Long Beach Poly, 36 vs. Torrey Pines, 27 vs. D1 state champ Chino Hills and 26 vs. all-CIFSS Open entrant Rancho Verde. Boogie was selected for the Jordan Brand Classic and Ballislife All-American Game.

Drake London of Moorpark stepped into basketball right after a dominant football season as a receiver. He was one of the most explosive scorers in the state and showed he could play at a high D1 level in college. Photo: OCSportsZone.com.

F -­ Drake London (Moorpark) 6-5 Sr.
He’s been somewhat overshadowed locally playing in the Coastal Canyon League behind 2018 all-stater Riley Battin (last year’s POY) and Jamie Jaquez, this year’s league and Ventura County Player of the Year. This season, however, Drake finally got his just due of being known more than just a highly-regarded football player who plays basketball as a secondary sport after turning in excellent summer performances for his BTI travel ball club and at the NBPA Top 100 Camp in Virginia. London used those experiences to springboard Moorpark to its finest season in recent times, going 21-10 after winning 19 games the previous three seasons. With a rare combination of football tenacity and perimeter skill, London averaged 29.2 ppg, 11.9 rpg, 3.8 apg, 2.4 spg, 2.0 bpg and led the team in charges taken. He also didn’t play alongside any player who was on Moorpark’s varsity the previous season and it’s pretty easy to say a playoff appearance would have been practically impossible without him. Headed to USC to play wide receiver, London is good enough to one day contribute to the Men of Troy’s basketball team and he’s itching for the opportunity to prove it.

G ­- Scotty Pippen Jr. (Sierra Canyon, Chatsworth) 6-1 Sr.
The son of the NBA legend (yes, Scottie and Scotty is spelled correctly for each) just missed making the all-state team last year, as Sierra Canyon had two picks (Ohio State’s Duane Washington Jr. and Martin), but this year the Trailblazers were even more dominant in the playoffs and deserve three elite teamers. Last season, Pippen stepped up his production down the stretch in the post-season and this season was the steadying force on a team with plenty of talent and depth. Whereas last season Washington seemed to be the indispensable piece, that was Pippen this year because of his combination of steady ball-handling and play-making. Pippen was rewarded for his influence, too, earning Gold Coast League MVP honors after averaging 16.3 ppg, 3.6 rpg, and 4.6 apg. While his father turned out to be one of the best players ever after playing in college for Central Arkansas, Pippen hopes to make a name for himself at Vanderbilt.

G — Bryce Pope (Torrey Pines, San Diego) 6-3 Sr.
Last year’s CIF San Diego Section Player of the Year (Boogie Ellis) made second team, so it’s natural this year’s choice does the same. After all, Pope led the Falcons to the section open crown behind a tireless work ethic and consistency. Always under control, smooth with the ball and an excellent shooter, Pope averaged 19.3 ppg while hitting double figures in 29 of 32 games, including a season-high 34 points versus section runner-up Foothills Christian, for a 25-7 team that finished ranked No. 19 in the state. Pope, whose twin brother Michael was also a key cog for veteran coach John Olive, displayed a complete game, averaging 5.9 rebounds and 3.8 assists while shooting at a 53-41-86 clip. Pope is looking to be an impact player for a UC San Diego program making the jump to D1.

G ­- Jaden Shackelford (Hesperia) 6-3 Sr.
It isn’t often a player from the High Desert off Highway 15 in the San Bernardino County towns of Hesperia, Victorville, Apple Valley or Barstow is an elite all-state player, so it stands out like a sore thumb when a player of Shackelford’s ability finishes up a stellar career in the region. Some quality players such as Amir Garrett (future MLB pitcher) and Anthony Randolph (future NBA player) call the region home, but finished high school elsewhere. Shackelford is the first elite team selection from the region since Jamaal Franklin of Serrano of Phelan in 2009 and those two join the likes of 1982 all-stater Clyde “Scooty” Rivers (Utah) and fellow Victor Valley stalwarts Tony Anderson (UCLA) and brothers Greg and Jerry Hyder, who played at the school in the late 1960s, as the best ever from the region. Shackelford put himself in conversations with that group by showcasing himself in travel ball and dominating play in the Mojave River League for four years, including two at cross-town Oak Hills. According to coach Robert Tossetti, the MRL only names a senior as its player of the year. “He really filled the state sheet this year and should have been the MRL player of the year three times, maybe even four,” Tossetti said. Shackelford led Hesperia to the MRL title with a 10-0 mark and averaged 45.5 ppg in league, including four consecutive over 50 points. Overall, the lefty with a sweet shooting stroke averaged 34 ppg, 11 rpg, 5.5 apg, and 4.0 spg and High Desert hoops fans will be following his moves at the University of Alabama.

G ­- Jaxen Turner (Rancho Verde, Moreno Valley) 6-2 Sr.
Turner is the other great terrific Grid-Hooper from the state alongside London and we already know it’s going to be tough to choose the Cal-Hi Sports Grid-Hoop Player of the Year between those two. Turner had the luxury of playing with a bit more talent surrounding him and helped take the team to the next level this season, as the Mustangs qualified for the CIF Southern Section Open playoffs and finished ranked No. 12 in the state with a 27-7 mark. A four-year standout, Turner was named to the all-CIFSS Open Division and to the all-SoCal Varsity team after averaging 23.2 ppg, 5.8 rpg and 4.7 apg. Another big feather in his cap was leading Rancho Verde to an unbeaten run in the Ivy League and being named its MVP over a host of talented players. Similar to London, “Jack Jack” put his football aggressiveness and instincts to use on the hardwood with terrific perimeter defensive play on arguably the best guarding unit in SoCal and was fearless when it came to challenging bigger players or taking the big shot. He’s signed with Arizona for football, and Sean Miller would love his fiery attitude in basketball practice as well.

Jaden McClanahan (left) and JoVon McClanahan brought a furious energy to the Salesian of Richmond basketball team. Photo: Mark Tennis.

THIRD TEAM OVERALL

G – Devin Askew (Mater Dei, Santa Ana) 6-4 Soph.
Already named as the Cal-Hi Sports State Sophomore of the Year (just the fifth ever from the legendary program), Askew essentially forced himself to the third team among the super elite picks with several strong outings late in the season. In leading the Monarchs to a 29-5 record and final No. 2 state ranking, Devin knocked down 14.0 ppg with additional marks of 6.8 apg and 2.1 spg. We usually don’t find deserving sophomores this high, but as the Monarchs kept rising in the SoCal Open playoffs so did Askew’s individual stock. He already has been named first team All-Orange County and first team All-CIFSS Open Division. With Askew, fellow sophomore Wilhelm Breidenbach (who probably would have been among those on Fourth Team Overall if we kept going) plus other top players returning, it should be another powerhouse squad at MD next season.

G ­- Derrick Carter-Hollinger (Foothills Christian, El Cajon) 6-5 Sr.
A model of consistency over the last three seasons for the Knights, Carter-Hollinger also seemed to garner player of the year support in the CIF San Diego Section along with Bryce Pope and Rejean “Boogie” Ellis. That helped him get onto this year’s elite all-state squad, too. A double-double machine, some of Derrick’s top outings included 21 points and 13 rebounds in a loss to Rancho Christian; 24 points, 15 rebounds and four blocks vs. Santa Fe Christian.; and 27 points in a regional playoff loss to Santa Margarita. Carter-Hollinger finished with averages of 17.6 ppg, 3.1 rpg, 4.2 apg, 2.6 spg and 3.1 bpg. Foothills Christian lost in the San Diego Open Division final after winning it last season. Derrick averaged just as many points per game for that team, too.

Isaiah Hill of Bakersfield Liberty was a football quarterback earlier in his prep career, but concentrated only on hoops after junior season and it paid off. Photo: BVarsityLive.com.

G -­ Isaiah Hill (Liberty, Bakersfield) 6-0 Sr.
Edward Turner was the Bakersfield Californian Player of the Year, but those honors were enhanced when Foothill was placed in the D5 regional and the Bakersfield Christian team it beat for the CIF Central Section D4 crown in a higher division, which helped open the door for a state title run. From a talent standpoint, Hill is on par with Turner and is the best overall guard to come out of Kern County since Braxton Huggins (Mira Monte) in 2014 or Tyrone Wallace (Bakersfield) in 2012. Hill is a big-time scoring guard but he’s more than capable of running a college club and we best remember him for a clutch late 3-pointer in that big-time club ball game between Compton Magic and Team Takeover in Las Vegas last summer when he played alongside all-staters such as the Mobley Brothers, the Big O, Jerod Lucas, Harvard-Westlake’s Johnny Juzang, and Corona Centennial’s Jaylen Clark. Ironically, it was his only field goal of the game, but for the Patriots, Hill was a big-time scorer, setting single season (677) and career (1,822) school records for points. Hill averaged 26 ppg and is headed to Tulsa.

G ­- Christian James (St. John Bosco, Bellflower) 6-2 Sr.
On the elite teams, we are favoring players off teams that number one, played in the state open division, and secondly, the D1 regional because those teams are far superior to the other divisions in terms of high-level games. Even breaking it down further, when we started considering players from the Trinity League for third team such as Orange Lutheran’s Makur Maker, Santa Margarita’s Max Agbonkpolo and Mater Dei’s Devin Askew, we realize the league MVP deserves a spot and James is that player. He was named the Trinity League’s MVP after stepping up big when Pacific-bound Jonathan Salazar went down for the season with injury in late December. The all-CIFSS Open Division choice averaged 14.3 ppg, 5.8 rpg, 4.2 apg, 1.7 spg for the Trinity League co-champions. James not only was a statistical leader, he was a floor leader on offense and play-maker on defense for a team that suffered through injuries and lineup changes and still ranked No. 13 in the state with a 22-10 mark.

G ­- Jaden McClanahan (Salesian, Richmond) 5-11 Sr.
With all due respect to the players chosen by credible outlets, McClanahan or doing himself and his brother as co-Players of the Year would definitely have been our route for Bay Area Player of the Year honors. After all, the Pride easily had the best overall resume and best wins of any team in NorCal and it’s because of great teamwork and the individual play of McClanahan and his twin brother Jovon, who joins him on the elite team. They were the catalysts for a 31-1 team that won big out-of-state games because of tenacious defense, a never-say-die attitude and clutch play-making ability. Jaden averaged 12 ppg (second on the team to junior Shane Bell), 4.5 rpg, 3.2 apg and 2.3 spg while earning first team All-Metro and region honors by both the San Francisco Chronicle and Bay Area News Group. Jovon averaged a few less points and a bit more assists per game, but Jaden got the most local honors and almost made second team for his impact on Bill Mellis’ club. Just as for on-the-court honors, the twins tend to cancel each other out a bit when it comes to recruiting but there’s little doubt both, and especially Jaden, are scholarship players right now somewhere on the next level.

G ­- Jovon McClanahan (Salesian, Richmond) 5-10 Sr.
After the Pride routed eventual NorCal Open Division champion Sheldon of Sacramento to win the Gridley Invitational tourney, Jovon was the one who had the big game with 22 points in leading Salesian to the win and he was named MVP. Later on in December, McClanahan was clutch down the stretch of both of Salesian’s biggest wins, including a big 3-pointer in the title game of the Chick-fil-A Classic and big free throws when the Pride got a win over Curie of Chicago, which was the No. 1 team in that legendary hoops city for most of the season. McClanahan didn’t quite get the stats of twin brother Jaden, but was close at 10.8 ppg, 3.7 rpg, 1.6 spd and 3.7 apg. Whenever anyone watched Salesian play, it’s probably guaranteed the most lasting impression was those two twin fireplug guards who were simply all over the court. We’re glad for this year’s all-state teams we didn’t have to split them up and could place them on the same all-state teams.

F -­ Viktor Rajkovic (Branson, Ross) 6-5 Sr.
We knew it was going to be tough to find many NorCal players on this elite team over a year and a half ago, and that was before Marcus Bagley and the rest of his family relocated to Sacramento. The San Francisco Chronicle named Rajkovic its player of the year, while the Bay Area News Group went with Logan’s Brett Thompson. Our defacto Bay Area POY is also on third team and Rajkovic would be next in our pecking order. Logan did beat Branson in the NorCal D1 final, but that was more of a collective effort while this hard-working combo forward was more of a one-man wrecking crew. A four-year standout, Rajkovic helped the Bulls win three consecutive North Coast Section D4 titles and saved his best for last, as he was dominant in Branson’s 2019 post-season run. Averaging 18 ppg for a 31-3 team ranked No. 22 in the state, Rajkovic averaged 20.4 points and 11.3 rebounds in eight playoff games, including 35 points and 14 versus Fortuna in the section title game and 28 and 17 versus Sacred Heart Cathedral in the opening round of the regional playoffs. Still undecided for college, he was a two-time player of the year by the Marin Independent Journal.

F -­ Edward “Squid” Turner (Foothill, Bakersfield) 6-8 Sr.
It isn’t often that a Division V State Player of the Year gets much consideration to be among the overall first, second or third teams. But with Turner there are reasons that it happened. First, we wanted to get Tulsa-bound guard Isaiah Hill of Bakersfield Liberty onto the third team for the season he’s had. But Turner was the Bakersfield Californian Player of the Year and instead of disagreeing with that choice it was determined to go with both of them. Turner should end up with a D1 college ride as well. He was the senior leader and four-year regular for a program that won just eight games when he began. This year, with Turner averaging 17.5 ppg, 9.6 rpg, 4.7 bpg and 2.4 spg, Foothill went 29-5 and won the CIF Division V state title. Turner may have a great future as a modern stretch four and if he continues to develop, a big-time college wing. He had one game with 17 blocked shots vs. Mira Monte of Bakersfield.

G ­- Josh Vazquez (Bishop Montgomery, Torrance) 6-3 Sr.
Three CIFSS Open Division teams — Mater Dei, Corona Centennial and Etiwanda — were underclass dominant and the best senior on the other five open entrants deserves a spot on the elite team. Vazquez foots that bill, as the combo guard who can set up teammates or explode in the key for a highlight dunk was the steadying force on a team that suffered injuries to all-state candidate and backcourt mate Gianni Hunt and forwards Will Crawford and Nick Schrader at various points in the season. Vazquez averaged 17.1 ppg, 5 rpg, 6 apg, 4 spg for a team that advanced to the CIFSS Open Division title game, where he kept the Knights close against Sierra Canyon with 19 points and five 3-pointers after scoring 23 points against the Trailblazers in a playoff game as a junior. When he was a sophomore, we coined him “One-Star” for a graphic that appeared on an ESPN telecast and he used that and other perceived slights to fuel his competitive drive. Vazquez was a four-year contributor to four CIFSS Open qualifiers, including the 2017 CIF Open champs, and got bigger and more explosive each season. He turned that skill and competitiveness into a scholarship from Montana, where he’ll join Carter-Hollinger and Crespi’s Kyle Owens.

F -­ Ziaire Williams (Notre Dame, Sherman Oaks) 6-7 Jr.
Injuries always affect the eventual selections of the players on the third team and Williams was one of those affected last season as a sophomore. When looking over the final selections, it was apparent the Mission League MVP should get serious consideration for the elite team and that was Harvard Westlake’s Johnny Juzang. While Juzang joined Williams on the underclass first team, Juzang missed plenty of the non-league portion of the season and ended up playing in half of the games for a 21-9 team. That opened up the door on this team for another player. Williams was deserving, regardless. His talent is just too much to ignore in comparison to the rest of the seniors under consideration and also the juniors. Williams, in fact, rates on par as a prospect with Christopher and Juzang and just a notch below first team picks Mobley and Green. The son of the former Antelope Valley High School standout with the same name, Williams averaged 27 ppg, 10 rpg and 3 apg while stepping up in big moments for the Knights with his nice combination of outside shooting, athletic drives and moves around the basket. With the right breaks, this all-CIFSS D2AA choice will be a Mr. Basketball candidate next season.

Note: Co-founder Mark Tennis contributed to this report. Injury, suspension, eligibility ruling, and transfer sit-outs effected the candidacy of Terren Frank (Sierra Canyon, Chatsworth); Gianni Hunt (Bishop Montgomery, Torrance); Jarred Hyder (Damien, La Verne); Dishon Jackson (St. Patrick-St. Vincent, Vallejo); Johnny Juzang (Harvard-Westlake, North Hollywood); Isaiah Johnson (Bishop Montgomery, Torrance); Josh Morgan (Sheldon, Sacramento) and Jonathan Salazar (St. John Bosco, Bellflower).

Ronnie Flores is the managing editor of CalHiSports.com. He can be reached at ronlocc1977@yahoo.com. Don’t forget to follow him on Twitter: @RonMFlores


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