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BOYS' BASKETBALL PREVIEW : Top 10 Players to Watch

November 27, 1994

Ronnie Arch

School: Crenshaw

Height: 6-6

Position: Shooting guard

'93-94 Performance: Arch, who averaged 14 points a game, is the Cougars' top-scorer from last season.

Buzz for '94-'95: Arch succeeds Reggie McFerren as Crenshaw's designated three-point specialist. Arch is an excellent spot-up shooter, but must improve scoring off the dribble. He will need to contribute 18-20 points a game to help soothe the loss of McFerren, Tremaine Fowlkes and Kris Johnson--the area's top-scoring trio last season.

*

Ryan Bailey

School: Loyola

Height: 6-1

Position: Point guard

'93-94 Performance: Bailey was second in scoring for Loyola at 16 points a game.

Buzz for '94-'95: This year will be Bailey's coming-out party after playing in the shadow of older brother Toby. Loyola has reason to be excited about the ever-improving Bailey, who scored a team-high 20 points in the Cubs' loss to Mater Dei in last year's Southern Section Division I-A semifinals. Look for Bailey to average in the mid-20s as he will have to carry much of the offensive load. He recently received a scholarship to Portland.

*

Clem Breedlove

School: Jordan

Height: 5-10

Position: Shooting guard

'93-94 Performance: Breedlove led the Bulldogs in scoring at 20 points a game and was selected to the All-Southeastern Conference Team.

Buzz for '94-'95: Breedlove is a very streaky shooter but a consistent scorer. He should easily lead the area in three-pointers attempted and will be among the top in three-pointers made. Breedlove has had trouble defending bigger guards, but his defense has improved.

*

Darwin Carter

School: Manual Arts

Height: 6-0

Position: Point guard

'93-94 Performance: Carter led the team in three-pointers made and was second in scoring at 16.4 points a game.

Buzz for '94-'95: Carter combines a good outside shot with extreme quickness. He is a good perimeter defender and is the strongest player on the team. Carter needs to improve his dribble penetration and must look to create for his teammates.

*

Jason Howzell

School: Dorsey

Height: 6-3

Position: Shooting guard

'93-94 Performance: Howzell averaged 12 points a game on a Dorsey team that spread the wealth on offense.

Buzz for '94-'95: Howzell will be a focal point of Dorsey's perimeter game. He is the team's best three-point shooter and perhaps its best scorer. Howzell needs to look for better quality shots. Has good height for his position but a thin frame may result in fatigue after three quarters of physical play.

*

Robert Gordon-Lamar

School: Washington

Height: 6-6

Position: Small/power forward

'93-94 Performance: Gordon-Lamar averaged nine points and nine rebounds a game during an up-and-down season.

Buzz for '94-'95: Gordon-Lamar has good range on the jump shot and solid rebounding skills, which make him interchangeable at scoring or power forward. Needs to increase aggressiveness and intensity at both ends to become a great player.

*

Raymond Palmer

School: Crenshaw

Height: 6-7

Position: Small forward

'93-94 Performance: Palmer averaged 10 points a game as member of Crenshaw's second unit.

Buzz for '94-'95: Palmer returns from last year's championship team and will be expected to provide offensive leadership. Like Arch, Palmer's specialty is the three-pointer but he needs to improve consistency from other areas of the floor. Despite a lanky frame, Palmer is a valuable asset at 6-7 because he can defend the shooting guard, small forward and some power forwards.

*

Travis Reed

School: Manual Arts

Height: 6-7

Position: Power forward

'93-94 Performance: Reed was a formidable backup to Tremaine Fowlkes, averaging 14 points a game as a freshman.

Buzz for '94-'95: Despite the probability of seeing quality minutes in the post with two-time defending State champion Crenshaw, Reed chose to take his act to Manual Arts. He will help fill the void created by David Rickenbacker's with good post moves, surprising ballhandling skills and good speed filling the lane. A consistent jump shot will help round out his game.

*

Dony Wilcher

School: Fremont

Height: 5-10

Position: Point guard

'93-94 Performance: Wilcher led the team in assists and formed one of the area's best backcourts alongside Calvin Patterson.

Buzz for '94-'95: Wilcher is a fiery player with a flashy game to match. Wilcher can bring a crowd to its feet with a spectacular no-look pass or throw the ball away leading a three-on-one fastbreak. At 5-10, Wilcher makes up for lack of size with quick hands and good defensive awareness.

*

Deon Williams

School: Verbum Dei

Height: 6-1

Position: Point guard

'93-94 Performance: Williams averaged 11 points a game in a back-up role to Jamal Cobbs.

Buzz for '94-'95: Williams is a very good ballhandler who distributes the ball well among his scorers. Williams will need to consistently hit the 18-foot jump shot to keep opponents from doubling-down on Verbum Dei's talented post players.

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