The 1st Annual Arizona All-Star Game Shootout took place @ Phoenix College on Friday evening and featured some of the best basketball talent from around the state for high school and junior college. The evening hosted two exciting all-star games in a post-season format that showcased some of the top available prospects for both high school and junior college. The all-star games attracted some top-rated scouts and college coaches, and also provided courtside seating for attendees to get an up-close and personal experience of the game. This event allowed for each student-athlete an opportunity for athletes to showcase their talents, and for fans to witness some of the best basketball talent in the state.
In the junior college all-star game for the event, the Black Team, led by Arizona Western JC's 6-foot-9 sophomore forward Yaxel Lendeborg, won the event, 99-86. Lendeborg was selected as the Most Valuable Player of the contest, as a result of his strong play in the event, where he showcased his offensive skillset and ability to make plays.
Lendeborg is currently one of the top recruited junior college prospects in the country. Lendeborg previously gave a commitment to St. John's University, but decided to re-open his college recruitment, after the program made a recent coaching change. I caught up with Lendeborg after the game, and he advised me that while his new recruitment has been slow, he plans to make a college decision by next month.
"It's been off to a slow start," said Lendeborg. "I'm trying to find the best fit for myself." Lendeborg went on to say, "The most important thing is - I want a school that feels like family."
Lendeborg is a tremendous talent with very good versatility for his size. He is able to play inside and out, and was used a lot the past two seasons by Head Coach Kyle Isaacs to handle the basketball from the point guard position, and make plays for his teammates - creating off the dribble and attacking the rim. Lendeborg is very skilled and fundamentally sound with good agility, hands and feet. His versatility allows him to play several positions on the floor, and his skillset compliments him, as he can score with his back to the basket or while facing from the wing. He is fluid in his approach, which will continue to benefit him, as he continues to mature over time. He runs the floor hard and is a strong finisher in the open floor. He is also a strong and active rebounder and has a college-ready body that will make him an immediate impact performer at the next level.
This season, Lendeborg averaged impressive numbers as a sophomore - posting 17.2 points and 13 rebounds, while shooting a staggering 72.7% from the field and 43.8% from three-point distance. He also led the ACCAC in rebounding two consecutive seasons.
I will continue to follow his college recruitment closely, and bring you any updates as they continue to develop, as this young man is a tremendous talent that can provide immediate support for a Division-I college program at any level.