After the program endured key losses to graduation, some observers thought the San Antonio Finest program would be headed for a down year. Those critics are quickly seeing the error in their projections.
“A lot of people thought we would be down this year, but I think we’ve already proven that we are headed for a good year,” said Coach Ray Caldwell. “We have two of the Top 25 players in the Class of 2016, and a whole lot more. Our top team is loaded, and we are very, very excited about the gifted players who have in the 2017 class.”
San Antonio Finest will showcase three of its most talented teams at the 2014 Summer Basketball Playoff, which will be played in Charlotte, NC, from July 27-29. The Summer Basketball Playoff will feature 72 of the nation’s elite club teams. The Playoff will be held at the same time as the Nike Nationals, which will be played two hours away in North Augusta, SC.
Caldwell’s crew will be led this year by Amber Ramirez (2016, 5-7, CG, No. 10 national rank from All Star Girls Report) and Chelsea Dungee (2016, 5-10, PG, No. 25).
“Amber is an explosive scorer who can score from all three levels. She has ‘in the gym’ range, a great mid-range game, and a special knack for finishing against the trees in the lane,” Caldwell said. “Chelsea is a power guard. She is super strong with a great first step. She can finish against contact, and she is a great facilitator. She loves to attack the lane and then kick it out for an open three.”
ASGR analyst Bret McCormick is also impressed with the Finest stars.
“Ray always has a team loaded with talent, and his best this year are Ramirez and Dungee. Ramierz is very skilled. She can shoot it and handle it, and she is a smooth, confident player,” McCormick said. “Dungee is committed to Oklahoma. She is another very skilled player. She can get to the rim and she can hit the three.”
Ramirez and Dungee will be getting plenty of support in Charlotte. The Finest roster will also include Carolina Hogue (2015, 6-1, F, No. 188), Moriah Creswell (2015, 5-6, G), Amber Vidal (2015, 5-6, CG), Deja Mason (2015, 6-3, C) and Kianna Williams (2017, 5-7, PG, No. 27).
“All of these kids are talented,” Caldwell said. “Caroline is a great facilitator from the high post, she can hit the trail three, and she is a tremendous shot blocker with a great wingspan. Moriah might be the quickest guard in Texas. She is a lock down defender, and she is an acrobatic finisher. Amber is a great transition scorer who is good off the bounce. The type of player who can always create her shot. Deja is going to have a big summer because she bigger and better this year. She is a true low post with a college ready body. Kianna is amazingly quick and explosive. She is also a great communicator and facilitator, and she can guard anyone from baseline to baseline.”
McCormick added his perspective on the top prospects from the Finest:
Carolina Hogue: “Hogue is committed to Nebraska-Omaha. She is a long, strong lefty with an inside-outside game, and she plays hard.”
Moriah Creswell: “Creswell is a quick, intelligent player. She defends well and can hit the three.”
Amber Vidal: “She is another quick athlete who understands the game. She has the skills, and she can see the floor.”
Deja Mason: “Mason is a long athlete who can score inside and block shots. She has a good upside.”
Kianna Williams: “Williams can really go. Excellent quickness, great ball skills, high IQ, and she can really score.”