|2021 SMAC Akron Elite-8th Grade Champions|
In one of the best games of the day, SMAC Akron Elite (2021) outlasted Extreme Heat Neon to win the 8th grade division (72-71) of the Buckeye Prep Summer Showcase at Otterbein University yesterday. The game was highly contested and the lead changed hands several times. Just when it appeared that Extreme Heat was headed toward a victory, a last minute surge by SMAC proved to be the difference. Both teams scored the ball at will, but the Heat, who need over time to get by MKU Athletics in the semi-finals, seemed to run out of steam late in the second half.
SMAC Akron Elite’s success is not about 1 or 2 high flying or star players, but rather a team of highly skilled players who play together, move the basketball well and are blessed with good coaching. They play hard, defend well and can really shoot the ball. The leading scores for SMAC were: Marcus Steele (11 points), Jacob Jariga (10 points), and Brock Henne (10 points). SMAC finished 4-1 on the weekend with a 63-33 win over Probound Elite and a 54-48 loss to MKU Athletics in pool play. In bracket play, SMAC defeated Buckeye Storm (69-19), #4 ranked All-Ohio Phenom (62-70) and Extreme Heat Neon in the championship game.
|MVP & All- Tournament Team|
Extreme Heat Neon finished 4-1 on the weekend with wins over All-Oho Black (65-46) and Buckeye Storm (55-52) in pool play, and Probound Elite (66-54) and MKU Athletics (56-52) in bracket play before going down to SMAC in the championship game. In the championship game, the Heat was led in scoring by TJ Pugh who dropped a game-high 24 points and Garrett Chapin who added another 15 points. We could not have been more impressed with the play of Pugh! We’ve seen him excel at our Buckeye Prep Elite Showcase, but some of the things he did this past weekend raised his stock in our eyes. He’s big, skilled and athletic and deserves to move up in or individual rankings. Congratulations to both teams for a great championship game!