Not to be outdone by their slightly older counterparts, the 7th-grade division had plenty of talent on hand at the guard position as Prep Hoops Next kicked off its 2021 Circuit schedule with the Southeast Kickoff at LakePoint Sports.
Maybe a little smaller, a little lighter, these guards nonetheless left nothing on the floor, and showed why Georgia develops such depth of talent year and year out. Prep Hoops GA left the HS kids alone for a weekend and was on hand to evaluate a slew of good-looking youngsters.
Andre Sherrod, SG, Norcross Heat
Great energy and awareness from the 2-spot, plenty of range well past the arc and no qualms about pulling the trigger, also a crafty driver who didn’t mind playing through contact but was often clever enough to slip around it for deuces, like all of the Heat a superb on-ball defender, lots of fight in matching bigger teams from the Atlanta Celtics Saturday and Team Huncho Sunday.
Xavier McCoy, Tyler Williams, Christian Teasley, CG’s, Norcross Heat
Three more from the well-coached Heat bunch, McCoy more of the penetrator (to the line 8 times in the 2 games in saw them), Williams a nicely rounded game (strong 9-pt game Sunday against Huncho), and Teasley makes his living from beyond the arc (five total 3s in two games I saw), they give the Heat coaches effort and savvy play in the backcourt, teaming with Sherrod they offer options, shooting and in your face defense.
Isaiah Langley, SG, Atlanta Celtics
A calm, coolness envelops Langley on the floor, never in a hurry he sees the game really well, quietly produces at the offensive end and understands positioning and angles on defense, can launch it from distance but really gets it done in the mid-range in an advanced way for that age group, big enough to move up and play the 3 or 4 but sets up as a terrific 2-guard prospect right now, dropped 11 on Saturday against the Heat and another 15 Sunday against Team Power in what was among the weekend’s best and most exciting games.
Jahsiah Payne, CG, Atlanta Celtics
The awesome depth of options for the Celtics continued with Payne, another CG with good composure and a well-drilled understanding on the floor, steady production is what you get here as he may not get a ton of points but affects the game by making winning plays with savvy and smarts, can definitely score it though from multiple spots, excellent ballhandler and passer makes the easy slide over to the wing, defends and rebounds well from the guard spot.
LA Lewis, CG, Atlanta Celtics
Playing upwards of 13 guys in junctures it can be easy to get lost in this lineup, Lewis stood out for his physicality and frame, powers off the dribble in pursuit of the rim and can finish through contact, had some of the weekend’s best passing spurts playing the lead guard where his vision and creativity were evident, including a halfcourt bounce pass to Payne for an and-1 finish that was the best I saw all weekend, good size gives him versatility to slide all over the floor and much like Payne got in the thick on the glass at both ends.
Ashtain Preston, SG, Team Huncho
Among the more diminutive 7th graders on hand, that didn’t deter the bomber from putting a show from 3-point land all weekend, played wisely to his strengths and got himself to open spots along the arc, dropped six 3s (23 total pts) in a Saturday setback to Team Power and another 4 daggers in a late Sunday win over Norcross Heat setting himself as one of the event’s shooting stars.
Jaylen Alexander, SG, Team Huncho
Where Preston was burying teams from deep, Alexander was doing the nitty-gritty, slicing and dicing and showing a scorer’s acumen closer to the basket, unselfish and smart on the floor he was patient and well-positioned to contribute be it using the bounce to create space or working in toward the offensive glass, particularly in their late Sunday win over the Heat where many of his 10 points were at crucial times.
Jordan Rouse, SG, Team Power
The kids from the Augusta-area took it right at their Atlanta-metro rivals all weekend and the fiery and aggressive Rouse was at the forefront, he put on a scintillating performance against Huncho on Saturday with 21 points getting them in a variety of ways, in Sunday’s thrilling OT win over Atlanta Celtics he added another 12 points and this time did significant damage from beyond the arc, not the biggest guard on his club but heads to the rim with abandon, that aggressiveness doesn’t translate into sloppy play though as he was as heady and smart a player as we saw all weekend, makes winning plays, Power was trying to get him the ball late in the Celtics game before the clutch Amari Pryce drained the 3 to send it to the extra session.
Kevin Savage, PG, AOT
Perhaps the smallest player at the 2026 level, Savage nonetheless proved skill and smarts can counter-balance size in the game of basketball, he showed a real PG’s moxie in handling the lion’s share of the ballhandling all game, and with AOT only having 6 players available Saturday everyone was forced to play big minutes against a relentless Atlanta Celtics bench in the nightcap of day 1, still showed all the fight you could ask for and slithered his way to 8 crafty points in the near upset.
Kota Suttle, SG, AOT
Loved the sweet stroke from Suttle, who didn’t get the number of touches I thought he should in their tough loss to that talented and deep Celtics bunch, when he did find his spot he bottomed out a pair of pretty 3s and showed the kind of scoring acumen of a much older player, good frame and a smooth mover and really like the intangibles and IQ he brings to the game.