JumpOffPlus.com Event Recap: Puget Sound Mini Camp August 2012

Kaylee Best of Seattle, Wash., made an impact with her ability to attack the lane at the inaugural Puget Sound Mini Camp. *Photo by Chris Hansen

SEATTLE, Wash. – After a nice break following a busy July travel season, it was time to get back in the gym in the Emerald City, and with an east coast guest clinician, Sean “Sticks” Smith of the Elite Basketball Academy and ATG Hoops in New Jersey. With players coming from as far north as Burlington, Wash. and as far south as Vancouver, Wash., and spanning the classes of 2013 through 2016, the inaugural Puget Sound Summer Mini Clinic was a success.

What you look for in a setting like this is for the seniors to lead and this weekend did not disappoint. Kaylee Best, a 5-foot-7 undecided point guard from Lakeside High School (Seattle, Wash.) has really evolved, after spending the summer playing primarily off the ball, it was great to see Best handling the ball and getting ready to resume point guard duties for her senior season. We’re accustomed to seeing her play transition basketball with Tree of Hope but in a primarily half-court setting, she really excelled with the ball-you-man principles, protecting the ball and showcasing her speed to get to the rim. She has grown a lot, even from her junior high school season.

But Best wasn’t alone, Brittney and Brooke Pahukoa, the twin sisters from Lake Stevens High School (Wash.) who have both committed to Boise State, brought great energy to the floor. Brittney’s day was cut short when she sprained her ankle but Brooke represented valiantly. The 5-10 wing has tremendous lift and when combined with perfect footwork she is a constant threat to score and a potential All Conference player when Boise State moves to the Big West. She has really good length and is going to get a couple of blocks and rebound her position well.

A pair of Franklin High (Seattle, Wash.) seniors helped rep the 2013 class too. Jazmin Horne, a 5-7 point guard and Savanna Reid, a 5-7 combo guard, both showed court savvy, and basketball smarts to go with their ability to make open shots. Horne, is undecided and is going to bring that swagger to the true point guard position. She showed tight handle, good balance and a knack for penetrating to get teammates open looks. The questions we had about her after the Nike Skills Academy were all answered this weekend.

The crop of 2014 prospects on hand were led by the Cleveland High School duo of Makayla Roper and Myzhanique “MyMy” Ladd. Roper is growing as a leader and is showing tremendous poise on the court. The lefty was already one of the area’s best scorers, but she’s showing signs that she can play the lead guard and be a dynamic combo-guard prospect. Ladd’s athleticism continues to be off the charts but she seems to be picking her spots better and it is clear she has been working on her ball skill this summer.

The youngsters on hand were impressive in they seemed to embrace the opportunity to mix it up with the older, more polished players. Aislinn Konig of Prairie High School (Vancouver, Wash.), is yet to play her first high school game as a class of 2016 prospect, but showed no fear of attacking and taking open shots. In the 2015 class, Sadie Mensing of Glacier Peak (Snohomish, Wash.) showed a strong skillset for a forward player with potential for development on the wing.


Rachel Swartz, 2013, Stanwood: At 6-3, she is athletic and gets post some mismatches. She was challenged to be more consistent with her footwork, something that could really help her at the next level.

Simona Allen, 2014, Auburn-Riverside: This 5-11 forward is in the middle of the transition from the inside to the perimeter. She has a strong build and isn’t afraid of contact from her time in the post, so in many ways she is ahead of her counterparts playing the wing their entire careers.

Christina Cheledinas, 2014, Lakeside: The rising junior showed good wing size and strong fundamentals. She doesn’t force much but she does make good decisions and converts open shots.

Lauren Estell, 2014, Lakeside: This tweener forward has a strong frame and she needs to use it more and play more physical. She gave a great effort in a perimeter-focused workout.

Rachel Davey, 2015, Auburn Riverside: Guard who can knock down open shots when she gets her feet set. If she can clean up her footwork she will find more scoring opportunities.

Sierra Cole, 2016, Bothell: For a youngster, Cole brings a lot of strength to the floor. She brings a great energy to the floor as well. She’s not gun shy and shows a good understanding of the game.

Tyra Lopez, 2016, Burlington Edison: A very polished player for a freshman, Lopez has good handles and ball skill. How her perimeter jumper improves will be something to keep an eye on.

Chris Hansen is a contributor to the JumpOffPlus.com National Scouting Report. Hansen also covers girls’ basketball and women’s college basketball prospects nationally for ESPN.com. A graduate of the University of Washington with a communications degree, he has been involved in the women’s basketball community since 1998 as a high school and club coach, trainer, evaluator and reporter. He is a member of the McDonald’s All-American team selection committee.