Phenom Hoops traveled to High Point to cover Wesleyan Christian Academy. Gone from the team is the consensus no. 1 player in the 2016 Harry Giles. Returning is Brandon Childress, Kwe Parker, Jalen Johnson, Mike Buckland, and Ben Nooner. The top newcomers are 6’8 sophomore Ian Steere and 6’5 junior David Caraher. While Childress (Wake Forest) and Parker (Rutgers) have already decided their collegiate team, 6’6 athletic wing Jalen Johnson was the hot prospect of the day. Providence and Florida were both on hand to watch Johnson. Below we will take a look at roster for Wesleyan Christian.

6’0 Sr. Brandon Childress

The first thing you notice about Childress is he has gotten physically stronger, especially in the upper body. He has put some serious time in the weight room and has gotten more explosive off the bounce too. There is excellent chemistry between him and Kwe Parker on the court. Childress really has fine tuned his ball handling skills and was in complete control. The two time NC Top 80 alum looks like he has taken the next step in preparing to be an ACC PG. We expect big things from Childress this season. He’s always been an excellent perimeter shooter, but his explosiveness and play making abilities were on full display during scrimmage.

6’3 Sr. Kwe Parker

Kwe Parker was a major priority for Rutgers during the summer and they secured the commitment of the bouncy athletic wing guard. As a matter of fact, the entire coaching staff was in attendance for the first day of the fall evaluation period. The coaching staff was all smiles and rightfully so. They came down and secured a tremendous commitment from one of the state’s top players in the 2016 class. There aren’t many players in the country with more bounce than the “human highlight.” That being said, Parker has worked extremely hard on his midrange pull up jumper and his 3-point shooting ability.

6’6 Sr. Jalen Johnson

Jalen Johnson had a tremendous travel ball season this past summer. Always known for his bounce and athleticism and ability to slash to the rim, Johnson became a consistent 3-point shooter and will become a high profile recruiting battle for his services. The lefty sports a picturesque jumper with plenty of arch and rotation. He has impeccable timing for offensive rebounds and put backs. While he has tremendous length and athleticism, he has such a smoothness to his game that is unequal by so many of his peers.

6’4 Sr. Mike Buckland

It seems like Mike Buckland has been at Wesleyan Christian forever. What’s great about Buckland is he has attended Wesleyan since he was in elementary and middle school. He has stayed the course and is definitely a player comfortable in his “own skin.” Yesterday, Buckland was “lights out” from the perimeter and demonstrated a much improved outside jumper. His elbow was considerably higher and his release point has improved. All the work in the off season looked to pay dividends on the court. Sometimes the forgotten player, look for Buckland to make a huge impact this season. He’s more athletic than you think and may just be the “glue guy” this season.

6’3 Sr. Ben Nooner

Not a household name among recruiting gurus, but Nooner has been a staple for the program for over four years. He’s a player that has accepted his role and does all the little things to be the perfect teammate. He will be called upon many times to step in and produce.

6’5 Jr. David Caraher

David Caraher simply knows how to play. He has excellent “instincts” on the court and has really worked on his open court ball handling and perimeter shooting skills. Caraher has the ability to secure defensive rebounds and put the ball on the floor and start the transition break. He has the ability to knock down 3-pointers and versatility is his calling card at the current time. We were impressed with his court vision and passing skills.

6’8 So. Ian Steere

College coaches are always impressed with his bounce and athleticism and yesterday was no exception. Steere has developed a much more improved low post game and the jump hook has become an effective offensive weapon. He’s a two handed rebounder and runs the floor well. His game continues to evolve and potential and upside are the two most often used words to explain his game.

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