Coming into the game the natural story line would be how 6’7” junior Nick Farrar would match up with 6’6” sophomore Redford Dunton, or at least that was the storyline, matchup that we were looking hard at.
Boy did those two put on a show, but not only did those two play well, 6’4” junior Jayden Beloti had 30 for Friendship and 6’5” sophomore Lucas Taylor had 28 for Heritage. Yes, this game was star studded and when the stars all play well, the crowd walks away very happy!
With all the stars playing well, the story of this game was the absolute and utter dominance of Nick Farrar. The 6’7” junior finished with 35 points, 20 rebounds and 5 assists in the win. However, it was the LOUD nature of which he does everything that really stands off the page for anyone watching.
Farrar, a very lefty handed lefty, showcased all the talent that today’s mis-match (or undersize, or skilled, whatever the vogue term of the minute is) forward has. He is a grab and go candidate off every rebound. He can score on the block, over both shoulders with skilled footwork, strength and soft touch. He can face you up and take you off the bounce from the high post, wing or short corner. He can pick and pop from 3 and he is highly explosive anytime he gets near the basket.
However, what puts Farrar in the Top 150 in the country conversation is his demeanor and mentality. He wants to dominate you, he wants to go right through your soul on every play. His competitive nature and motor really stand out. All of the dunks are great, the movement in the half court and finishes, but it is that little extra fire that really makes it pop.
On the other side of things, sophomore Redford Dunton did his thing. Noted as a length, highly cerebral athletic wing, Dunton lived up to all of that. He scored at each level, but what he does so well is move off the ball and catch, at his spots, shot ready. He knows his game and plays directly toward his strengths. Also, don’t let the slender frame fool you, Dunton is tough. He is a tough rebounder, fighting on the block (giving up 50+ pounds to Farrar) to get 12+ rebounds and a handful of blocks.
Dunton is one who is tracking at the highest level, and while he will not pass the initial look test, nor will you watch and think everything about him is fundamentally pristine, his production against the best never wanes. He has very translatable skills and is a grinder.
If Farrar had not been in this game, the story would have been Heritage’s 6’5” sophomore Lucas Taylor. What a second half Taylor had, exploding for 28 points (all in the second half). The lengthy shooting guard went 5-7 from 3 and showcased a solid wing handle and the ability to score the ball at each level. Lots of upside with him.
Also, needs to be spoken about is 6’4” junior Jayden Beloti’s output. What a great yin to Farrar’s yang. The downhill wing is just wired to score the ball. Standing with great length, Beloti plays with great confidence and aggression. He is primed for a breakout, ready for the colleges to come in and watch. Great size and skill.
All in all, this game had everything you wanted. While Friendship won the game, and advanced to the second round of the playoffs, Heritage has nothing to hold their heads about. Very bright future for both programs. Also, hats off to Tilden Brill (Heritage) and PJ Lowman (Friendship) as both coaches did a great job here…
Nick Farrar – 35, Jayden Beloti – 30, Jeremiah Baker – 10, Kenny Noland – 11
Lucas Taylor – 28, Redford Dunton – 23, Tre Waller – 11