December 6, 2013

10 Boys' Basketball Players To Watch

Dustin Cole: Bonny Eagle, senior guard: Arguably the top player in the state, Cole was the leading scorer in the SMAA last season with 28.5 points per game. He scored 50 points in a game against Kennebunk. The 5-foot-9 point guard has 1,285 career points. He will attend Division II Franklin Pierce College on scholarship beginning in the fall of 2014.

Thomas Coyne: Falmouth, sophomore guard: Coyne burst onto the scene as a freshman, demonstrating great range from beyond the arc. Coyne can play the point or the off guard equally effectively. He kept gaining more and more playing time as the season progressed and played his best in the tournament as he averaged in double figures.

John Hepburn: Boothbay Region, junior forward: Hepburn sparked the Seahawks to the Western Maine Class C title and was named the MVP of the tournament. Hepburn averaged 14 points a game. He can play inside or out and will be a focal point of the offense again this season.

Mike McDevitt: Greely, senior center: McDevitt starts his fourth season as a varsity starter. He’s one of the top centers in the state, having improved each season. The 6-foot-7 McDevitt led the Rangers with 15.4 points and 9.8 rebounds a game. McDevitt recently signed a letter of intent to play at Division II Franklin Pierce College.

Colin Morse: Camden Hills, senior guard: The 6-foot-3 point guard averaged 12 points a game last season. A versatile player, Morse can shoot the 3, handle the ball or take it to the rim. He’s equally comfortable at point guard, No. 2 guard or small forward. The Windjammers have a balanced attack which likely mutes Morse’s points, but he’s capable of scoring 20 points in any game.

Quinn Richardson-Newton: Thornton Academy, senior forward: Richardson-Newton leads an experienced Golden Trojans’ team. He averaged 13 points a game last season as Thornton knocked off Deering in the quarterfinals. The 6-foot-3 Richardson-Newton has the ballhandling skills to run the team, the shooting ability to hit the 3-pointer and the jumping ability to be a top rebounder.

Jack Simonds: Falmouth, junior center: A 6-foot-6 player, who can score inside or out, Simonds sparked the Yachtsmen to the Class B state title. The lefthander averaged 14 points a game during the regular season and then upped it to 19 points a game during the tournament. Simonds will get to show SMAA teams his talents during the tournament as Falmouth has moved up to Class A.

Matt Talbot: Portland, senior center: The 6-foot-5 standout has the ability to take over games in stretches with his athleticism. He averaged 10.5 points and 10.2 rebounds per game last season. Talbot can score inside or take it outside and make the 3-pointer. Defensively, his shot blocking ability and rebounding give his team an edge inside.

Shyheim Ulrickson: Mt. Ararat, sophomore guard: Ulrickson opened eyes around the league as a freshman by leading the Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference in scoring with 17.5 points a game. A point guard, he has the ability to set up his teammates and also to create his own shot.

Justin Zukowski: Portland, senior guard: The 6-foot point guard is one of the top all-around players in the SMAA. He averaged 10 points on a well-balanced Bulldogs’ team last season. Zukowski is capable of scoring 20-plus points in any game, but looks to set up his teammates first. He ranked in the top 10 in steals and sank 33, three-pointers last season.

– Tom Chard, Staff Writer

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