It’s a process at Mountain Mission. Every kid on the roster is from a foreign country, with only one Canadian being from North America. Fortunately, on the fourteen man roster, they do return six players from last year’s team, so there is some continuity.

With a virtually new roster, Mountain Mission has something working for them, a great staff. Head Coach Pawel Mrozik played professional ball in Poland and coached at Valparasio. Assistant Coach Kamil Pietris played professionally in Poland’s highest league, where he signed a contract as a 16 year old. Both coaches are intense and highly knowledgeable tacticians. Without question, their kids develop.

Mountain Mission School is located in Grundy, Virginia which is in the very most western tip of Virginia. It is about 5 miles from the West Virginia border, and 5 miles from the Kentucky border. The bording school houses around 200 kids, where the school “rescued kids from desperate situations around the globe”.

Carrying out a great cause, Mountain Mission has some players too.

The Stud
While Arizona State commitment Jethro Tshisumpa is already committed to a high major school and ranked as a consensus Top 100 player, it is 6’11” Maciej Bender (pictured right) that is the unquestioned best player on the team. Bender has a great frame, and the ability to beat you facing up or in the post. He shots to 3, handles from the high post, is a great passer, and has great footwork and feel on the blocks. Bender is a Top 100 player and current ranked just ahead of Mario Kegler as the number 6 prospect in Virginia. Bender carries offers from Georgia Tech, Georgia, Arizona State, Ole Miss, Providence, West Virginia, and others.

The Committed
It was a rapid rise for 6’10” Jethro Tshisumpa (Pictured Above) as Coach Mrazik questioned even sending him to the Virginia Top 80. Fortunately, for everyone, he did and Tshisumpa took advantage of that opportunity breaking out and winning Mr Defense. Since then, Tshisumpa has shot up the charts as a consensus Top 100 player and went from an unknown player to committed to Arizona State of the Pac-12. With his chiseld 260 pound frame and 7’5” wing span, Tshisumpa is an elite rim protector.

The Next In Line
The senior class at Mountain Mission has two top 100 type players and a third high major recruit in it. That is fine withFlorent Thamba, as he is able to take a secondary role initially. However, fully expect the native of Congo by way of South Africa to flourish in the role of Top 100 type next year. Thamba stands 6’10”, weighs in around 225 pounds, and wields a wing span of 7’4”. He runs like a gazelle, jumps like a pogo stick, and his motor always runs hot. As he get acclimated to the United States and his new team, the 16 year old will have time.

The Unquestioned Leader
Mountain Mission graduated their point guard last season as Hansel Atencia is now a freshman at Liberty. However, they dipped into Ontario, Canada to pick up 5’10” senior Keshon Montague. Montague is a very sturdy point guard, with a great sense of balance and very strong frame. He is an in your face defender for 94’ and exudes a sense of toughness and competitiveness that bleeds through his team. Playing for UPlay Canada this summer on the Adidas Gauntlet, Montague averaged 8.5 Points, 4 Assists, and 3 Boards per game. He has an offer from Central Connecticut State, but look for that list to continually grow as more people see him.

The Rapidly Up and Coming
Harold Baruti came to the United States three years ago as a 6’5” post player, who had long arms and possessed ridiculous athleticism. Getting ready to suit up for his senior season, Baruti is still 6’5”, but his game has transformed out to the wing. Baruti has great touch, especially off the catch, with deep range. His handle is improving in close spaces, and the kid is a game changing athlete and competitor. Baruti currently has offers from UNC Wilmington and SMU.

Seniors You Need to Know
6’6” Diogo Brito averaged 18 Points, 6 Boards, and 4 Assists playing for Portugal this summer in the FIBA games. While slender, Brito has great length and his feel for the game is off the charts. Put him in a pick and roll offense, and he makes the right decisions consistently, scoring and passing at all 3 levels. 6’8” Jakub Mijakowski carries a 4.0 GPA with recruitment from Bucknell, Cornell, Princeton, and Albany. He is a very tough stretch four, who rebounds and is a very good straight line athlete. However, Mijakowski’s calling card is his ability to shoot the ball. He displays a one/two-dribble pull up and deep range off the catch and shoot.

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