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Hoop Dreams Idaho has a veteran, talented perimeter group this year, but the team’s baseline players are a different story. They have talent, but the experience is missing.
“We spent the spring getting those young post players battle ready for July,” explained Coach Shambric Williams. “They had never experienced the physical contact and the intensity they are facing at this level. But, they have grown a lot during the spring.
“The skills were always there, but you just never known if they are going to step up. It was something of an eye-opener for them, but our guards really helped them out a lot, and I think those young post players are going to be a huge help in July.”
The Hoop Dreams post players will face an important challenge when they travel across the country to Charlotte, NC for the 2015 ASGR Summer Basketball Playoff on July 27-30. The event, which will feature many of America’s top club programs, will be held at the Carolina Courts facility.
The Hoop Dreams perimeter is anchored by the trio of Destiny Slocum (2016, 5-7, PG), Tori Williams (2017, 5-8, PG) and Dominique Williams(2016, 6-1, WF). Slocum is currently listed as the No. 10 recruit in the nation by the All Star Girls Report, and Tori Williams is at No. 80 in the Class of 2017, and Dominique Williams (who is Shambric’s daughter) is at No. 111 for 2016.
“Destiny is not just a point guard, she is a great all-around player,” the coach said. “She is a player who is going to do whatever she can to help her team win. Tori is a knock-down shooter, and her IQ is off the charts. She can handle the ball, and she can play without the ball, so she is a perfect compliment to Destiny. Dominique helps on the inside, but she can also shoot the three and handle the basketball. Her versatility makes her a great tool to have.”
Those veterans will be on the court with rising stars Mandy Simpson (2017, 6-1, PF) and Kate Murray (2018, 6-1, P).
“Mandy has gotten her feet wet, and she understands what it takes to compete at this level,” Williams said. “She can go inside and bang, and she can score with either hand. She can also step out and shoot the three, so she is a true stretch four.
“Kate has a strong body, she can post up well, she can shoot the three, and she runs very well. She is one of our hardest workers, and she has a great upside. Kate really needed the experience she has been getting, and her confidence has been growing. You can tell, she feels like she belongs now.”