Winding down the 2016 NY2LA Sports Final Chapter, Saturday’s bracket play separated the contenders from the pretenders. In 17U action, only eight teams remain in the hunt for the inaugural title. One of those teams is Swaaghouse Elite. Led by their terrific point guard Marcus Garrett, this group from Texas has found new life after starting 0-3 in pool play.

Here are the top performers and stock boosters from Saturday’s action…

Terrance Banyard – 2017 – PF – DTA

Banyard had a strong effort in a win over the Iowa Mavericks on Saturday. The 6-foot-7 forward finished well around the rim and threw down a few dunks in traffic. Banyard is a long, athletic forward with some good upside. He runs the floor offensively looking for transition opportunities. Banyard is also an excellent shot blocker than understands how to play vertical. As many times as he’s on an island, Banyard does a nice job of protecting the rim without fouling. Banyard currently holds a couple of Division 2 offer and has put together a strong July. 

Troy Brown Jr. – 2017 – PG – Las Vegas Prospects
One of the smartest, most instinctive players in the country, Brown gives you everything he’s got on both ends of the floor. Brown has the unique ability to see things developing before they happen and as a result, makes a lot of things happen both offensively and defensively. Brown has a great understanding of what his team needs. He’ll distribute to his playmakers and play great defense for most of the game, but when it’s time to be aggressive and take chances, Brown comes through. He scored a game-high 21 points in a win over All-In Future Elite on Saturday. A legit five-star prospect, Brown should end up at a school with plenty of talent around him in 2017-18. He’ll manage a loaded lineup as well as many prospect out there.

Marcus Garrett – 2017 – PG – Swaghouse Elite
Garrett perhaps had his best performance of the tournament during Saturday’s win over the SYF Players. With his team trailing by as many as 20 points, Garrett went off in the second half. He scored 17 of his game-high 19 points in the final period as Swaghouse Elite was able to advance. Garrett is an unselfish player on most occasions, but it was nice to see him rise to the occasion and carry his team to the finish line on the brink of elimination. Garrett was terrific in transition, relentlessly attacking the defense. One of the most undervalued prospects in the country, Garrett continues to shine this week against upper-level competition. 

Jaelen House – 2019 – PG – Las Vegas Prospects
House might not look the part, but this young man has a lot of game. The 5-foot-9 point guard is a killer on the basketball court. House has a deep bag of tricks and skills well beyond his years. A make-you-miss guard, House has a lot of shake with the ball in his hands and always seems to be one step of the defense. Already a three-level scorer, there’s not an area on the floor that House isn’t comfortable. He can be unselfish too. House will get into the teeth of the defense and drop dimes all day long if too many players come to help. 

Jaedon Ledee – 2018 – SF – RL9
Ledee is a high-upside prospect in Texas. He’s a high-level leaper with some exciting strength. At 6-foot-8, Ledee has the ability to play either forward spot. While he’s not much of a perimeter threat, Ledee is very difficult to keep away from the basket. Ledee also displayed an advanced mid-range game, able to fade away when starting with his back to the basket. Also a strong defensive presence, Ledee is an enforcer in the paint with his shot blocking ability and physical play. While RL9 fell to Swaghouse Elite in the Round of 32, Ledee had a nice all-around effort. He led his team back from a 15-point deficit by getting after the offensive glass and converting some three-point plays. Ledee had 21 points in the loss. 

Charles O’Bannon – 2017 – SG – Las Vegas Prospects
When this kid gets hot, there’s no slowing him down. Even in a blowout win over the Dakota Schoolers, O’Bannon showed no mercy. He scored 18 first half points and finished with a game-high 27. O’Bannon was feeling it from downtown and went way beyond the arc for triples. At 6-foot-6 with his length and ability, O’Bannon can get any shot he wants on the floor. One of the best pure shot makers in the country, O’Bannon has one of the sweetest strokes you’ll see and is a real treat to watch. O’Bannon also has wheels in transition. When there’s an opportunity for a run out, O’Bannon is on top of it. 

Keondre Schumacher – 2017 – PG – All-In Y&R
A terrific shooter, Schumacher’s offense helped get All-In Y&R a victory over Quad City Elite. Schumacher has a quick stroke that defenses struggle to contest and he also elevates really nicely on his shot as well. A tenacious defender, Schumacher has excellent lateral quickness, making it really hard for the opposition to beat him off the dribble. In a low-scoring affair, Schumacher scored 10 points in the first half, which pushed All-In Y&R to a big early lead that they would eventually hold on to. 

Devin Whitelow – 2017 – PG – Illinois Irish
Whitelow always brings energy and toughness to his team, but on Saturday, brought an added offensive punch. He scored nine of his team-high 12 points in the first half, finishing some tough baskets at the rim and knocking down a couple triples. In the second half, Whitelow did a great job of making the extra pass, trading a good shot for a great one. His teammates responded by doing their part and knocking down their open jumpers. One of the toughest players out there, Whitelow is a great competitor, especially on the defensive end. It doesn’t matter who he’s guarding, the opposition is going to be in for a fist fight all game long. 

Gavin Baumgartner – 2017 – G/F – Minnesota Comets

Not known for his scoring necessarily, Baumgartner came up with 16 points in a win over the Colorado Titans. In what turned out to be a shootout, Baumgartner’s added offense was big for the Minnesota Comets. Baumgartner isn’t overly athletic or fast, but can shoot off the dribble if given room to operate. He can also invert himself in the offense and play through the post. On a team where someone new seems to step up each game, Baumgartner had his turn on Saturday to help his team advance to the Round of 32. 

Max Curran – 2016 – F – Grassroots Sizzle
Curran has some major bounce. The former Milwaukee commit can run the floor as well as any big man and when he gets a chance to make a highlight, you better believe Curran is going to deliver. The 6-foot-9 forward is still undecided next season, but will certainly have options. Curran is a big time finisher around the rim and a high-level shot blocker. He’s working hard to improve his skills in the half court as a post-up big, but Curran does most of his damage in transition as of now. He does have the ability to pick n’ pop and stretch the floor with his three-point shooting. Curran had a team-high 22 points in a loss to DTA Saturday night.

Brady Elder – 2017 – SG – Iowa Mavericks
A big sleeper in Iowa, Elder has a lot of game. A highly skilled and smooth scorer, Elder went for 22 points against some really good athletes of DTA on Saturday. Despite the loss, Elder put his team on his back down the stretch, converting a number of three-point plays the old fashioned way. Elder whooped people off the bounce and has a unique ability for his size to hang in mid-air, double-clutch, and finish. He’s a little undersized for the shooting guard position, but Elder makes up for it with change of pace. He’s very good at pull-up off the dribble from mid and three-point range and made some difficult shots look easy. This is a prospect Division 2 and 3 schools should be taking a hard look at. 

Tyree Ellis – 2017 – SF – DTA
Ellis had a breakout performance in a win over Grassroots Hoops on Saturday. The lefty plays much bigger than his size and has some interesting length and strength. Ellis has a nice stroke from downtown and connected on three triples. He was at his best when he was slashing and attacking the basket. When defenders challenge Ellis at the rim, they just bounce off his strong frame. Ellis doesn’t blow anybody away with speed or leaping ability, but he’s smooth and has a knack for maneuvering around the defense. He scored a game-high 24 points to lead DTA into Sunday’s quarterfinals. 

Tye Evers – 2017 – PF – Dakota Schoolers
Evers is built like an ox and uses that strength to his advantage of the basketball court. He doesn’t get many opportunities offensively, but when he does it’s because Evers has pinned his man under the hoop and is easily able to power his way through contact. Defensively, Evers sets the tone in the paint. Any drives coming down the lane are challenged. Evers doesn’t give up any easy looks and those who challenge him at the rim are going to feel it the next morning. He finished with 12 points and a ton of rebounds during Saturday’s win over TAW.

Bryce Irsfeld – 2017 – PG – Minnesota Comets
I really like players who stick to their roles, but have the ability to rise above them when things aren’t going according to plan. Irself hit big shot after big shot for the Minnesota Comets during their close win over the Minnesota Warriors. This is the definition of a “coach’s dream.” Irsfeld is a natural leader that’s cool under fire and won’t let his team die. A tough defender and sweet shooter, Irsfeld finished with a game-high 20 points. With the Comets trailing late, Irself hit a number of hurried shots on the go to draw his team within striking distance and eventually steal a last second victory. 

Chance Michels – 2019 – SG – Las Vegas Prospects
Sniper alert! Michels looks like a future big time shooter in the 2019 class. He just wouldn’t miss in a blowout win over the Colorado Titans in Saturday’s nightcap. The youngster already has a great stroke as a rise and fire wing. Also a high-IQ transition presence, Michels makes plays on the go and can get to the rack and finish. Michels plays hard defense and knows how to body up the offense without fouling on the perimeter. Michels handles the basketball really well and he’s a guy you can clear out and let create or put in the pick n’ roll.

Malcolm Townsel – 2017 – SG – SYF Players
Townsel was just on fire in Saturday’s win over Swaaghouse Elite. He scored eight of his team’s first 10 points and went for 17 in the first half alone. Townsel was feeling it from beyond the arc, hitting three triples in the opening period. Townsel has some nice length and a sweet stroke at 6-foot-4. He’s also applies that to the defensive end, playing the passing lanes and contesting shooters.