Sunnyslope High School had a stellar end to the 2015-2016 season - shocking basketball enthusiasts in the state after posting a 25-5 overall record, and finishing as the Division-I state champion runner-up. There were numerous young players on the Vikings' team last season that were vital in the success of the team.
One player that was very important in the team's success last season was 6-foot-5 junior post Chris Orozco. While standing alone as the team's only true post player last season, Orozco came up big for head coach Ray Portela and his staff last season. While not counted on a lot to score last season, Orozco was a force inside for the Vikings - averaging 8.6 points and 3.9 rebounds per/outing. Orozco came up big for Sunnyslope down the playoff stretch, and became more and more important as the season progressed.
Orozco would take his experience gained from a valuable playoff run and carry his strong play over into the club season. While playing with a very talented group for the Powerhouse Hoops 16U squad, Orozco would play very consistent all spring and summer - proving that he can play against the best competition in the West. While Orozco only saw his time in the low post for Sunnyslope throughout the high school season, this young man would stretch out offensively and prove to be a major scoring threat during the club season.
Make no mistake about it, Orozco is a low post scorer with a nice jump hook with either hand and will see his time at the collegiate level as a low post scorer, but this club season Orozco proved that he has a nice ability to make shots from the perimeter, and also can put the ball on the floor from the free-throw line and get to the basket, where he is a good finisher. Orozco gets to the free-throw line quite often as well, a nice attribute for him and any team he plays on. He has very good toughness as a player and competes hard. While he is not very vertical as an athlete, he uses his body quite well to create space for himself and to gain an advantage on defensive players. He enjoys physical contact and is a very good offensive rebounder and finisher.
After having a strong showing this spring and summer on the club circuit, Orozco gained valuable confidence that will help him a great deal this high school season, as Sunyslope looks to get back to the Division-I state final. Orozco's performance this spring and summer will make him much more aggressive offensively inside the paint and away from the basket, which should combine nicely with the superb play of the many talented Sunnyslope guards.
As a college prospect, Orozco should garner a lot of recruiting attention over the next year from smaller college programs looking for toughness and low post play. There are many college programs out there that need a player like this, and I look for him to become a commodity with many NAIA and division-II programs in the West.
I look for Orozco to have a big junior season for the Vikings, as his play will be very important for a surging team that shocked the entire state last high school season.