Visalia, CA – This past Friday night, Central Cali Prospects (myself and Clutch Clips Hoop) hosted our 3rd Annual Junior/Senior Showcase at the Central Valley Christian High School Gym. The event featured over 40 players from the classes of 2024 and 2025 (current seniors and juniors), as well as a few underclassmen, representing 21 high schools from the San Joaquin Valley. Players were placed on one of the five showcase teams and we used surrounding Division 1 college programs for team names (CSU Bakersfield, Fresno State, UC Santa Barbara, CSU Northridge, and Cal Poly). Each player/team played in two showcase games for a total of 5 games for the event.
In the first game, UCSB defeated CSUN by a score of 83 to 64, and was led by Remy Barnes, Jensen Hirschkorn, and Jeremiah Posada. CSUN was led by Arman Arisian, Isaak Smith, and Gus Swenning. Game 2 was a blowout, as CSUB, led by Mikah Tolpezninkas, Nolan Birchall, Caden Lloyd, and DJ Stickman, defeated Cal Poly by a score of 112 to 79. James Miller and Loukas Jones were the bright spots for Cal Poly. Fresno State, led by Jordan Espinoza and Aden Millwee, beat CSUN 80 to 59, despite a strong showing by Justin Stroud. Game 4 was the most competitive game, as CSUB edged out UCSB 91 to 87. CSUB was led by Stickman, Tolpezninkas, Birchall, and Ronnie Roche, while UCSB was led by Va’Ron Mitchell, Jackson Scarborough, Barnes, and Hirschkorn. The final game of the event saw Cal Poly defeat Fresno State, 107 to 83, with strong showings from Jones, Carlos Blancaz, Brandon Ezell, and Miller for the winning team, and Espinoza and Millwee with monster games in the loss.
The remainder of this article lists the top 30 players from the event in ranked order, based on some feedback from event personnel but ultimately I made the final decisions. Jordan Espinoza was the Most Outstanding Player of the event, continuing the dominance that Clovis North has had at our events for players in the 2024 class. In the previous 2 years, Connor Amundsen has taken home Most Oustanding Player honors but was unable to attend due to injury but Espinoza kept the streak going. In the article below, I provide a brief summary of how each player performed at the Junior/Senior Showcase, recorded statistics from the games, the players’ information, the number of where I had them ranked, and some notes on the players’ skill set. I will be updating the Class of 2024 and 2025 Player Rankings before the end of the 2023 calendar year.
1. 2024 6’3 Jordan Espinoza (Clovis North/Fresno CA)
Espinoza has taken his game to new heights, literally, as he was looking to throw down everything near the rim and showed improved accuracy from beyond the arc. Espinoza scored 19 points in his first game before going off for 25 points in the final game of the event, connecting on 5 threes in the process. Espinoza is an elite athlete with a physical build to absorb contact through traffic, has solid footwork in the mid-post area to create separation on his jumper, is accurate with the 3-ball off the dribble or the catch-and-shoot, and has the moves to create off the wing. Defensively, Espinoza has the frame to defend bigger post players, the foot speed and agility to stay in front of perimeter players, does a great job on the glass, and can push the pace in the open court. Espinoza was the most dominant player at the event and showed he is a true threat scoring the ball from all 3-levels.
2. 2025 6’ Aden Millwee (Fresno Christian/CA)
Millwee was the biggest stock-riser of the showcase, as he was the event’s overall leading scorer and was the top 3-point shooter in attendance. Millwee had a strong showing in his first game, as he scored 17 points and showed he is as much a willing passer as a scorer. Millwee made his statement in the last game of the event, as he would score a single-game event high of 29 points knocking down 9 threes in the process for a total of 46 points in both games. Millwee has solid handles, keeps the ball on a string to weave through the defense, has the court vision to find open teammates when on the attack, and has touch on the floater and short jumper. Millwee has the moves to create separation from his defender, is lights out from beyond the arc both off the dribble or the catch and shoot, and moves fluidly off the ball to get open. Good on-court leadership and does a solid job defending opposing guards. Will be a key piece for Fresno Christian, who has put together a solid roster.
3. 2025 6’1 DJ Stickman (Clovis West/Fresno CA)
Stickman is one of the best overall athletes in Central Section high school hoops, and he displayed that in various ways at the showcase. Stickman scored 14 points in each of his two games and threw down some monster dunks and showed off his touch around the rim attacking the basket off the dribble. Stickman has elite bounce to control the boards, alter and block shots in the paint and on the wing, has active hands with his wingspan that allows him to poke the ball out or jump passing lanes and get into the open court. Stickman has good court vision, strength and precision to make reads in tight windows, and has improved his perimeter shot to force defenders to overplay and open up driving lanes for him to exploit opponents. One of the best-kept secrets in the Central Section and has D1 athleticism. If he keeps working on his game he could be a true D1 guy when all is said and done and is already one of the top two-way players in the Section.
4. 2025 6’3 Loukas Jones (Clovis North/Fresno CA)
Jones has one of the more polished overall offensive skill sets in the Section but he was on a mission to get buckets at the showcase. Jones had 18 points with 4 threes in his first game, which was followed by a 24-point performance in his last game adding 5 more threes. Jones was one of the top 5 scorers of the event with a total of 42 points but he did display his all-around game on both ends. Jones has the handles and moves to create off the dribble, has a smooth stroke from the perimeter, plays with nice pace to keep his defender off balance, is accurate with the stop-and-pop mid-range, and has next-level range on the 3-ball off the dribble. Jones moves fluidly off the ball, gets to his shot spots for open looks, and has the court vision and handles to make plays when on the attack. Jones is a versatile defender, has quick hands that lead to deflections and steals, and is tough to defend in the open court. He will be a key piece for the Broncos, who will look to capture another TRAC title and make a run at the Division 1 Section championship.
5. 2025 6’1 James Miller (Roosevelt/Fresno CA)
Miller has the game and skill set that allow him to excel in individual showcase settings, and this event was no different, as he was a top 5 overall scorer at the event. Miller had 24 points in his first game with 3 threes in the process, which was followed by 16 points in his 2nd game for a total of 40 points. Miller has elite handles, keeps the ball on a string, shifty moves when creating off the dribble to shake his defender, and is an accurate 3-level scorer with range on the 3-ball. Miller makes great use of the hesitation moves, slices through the defense, has the court vision to find open teammates, and his stop-and-pop mid-range jumper off the bounce is smooth and efficient. Miller will lead Roosevelt this season at the point for what I am looking at as one of the sleeper teams in the Section this upcoming season.
6. 2025 6’4 Remy Barnes (Hanford West/CA)
Barnes continues to show he is one of the more versatile scorers and two-way impact players in the Central Section and that was on full display at the showcase. Barnes got it going early and often finishing with a team-high 21 points, which was followed by a 15-point showing in his 2nd game and was one of the top overall players at the event. Barnes has good length, moves well to stay in front of perimeter players, alters shots on the wing or in the post, and uses his wingspan to deflect passes in passing lanes that lead to easy transition buckets. Barnes makes great use of the wide crossover to get by his defender, is accurate with the perimeter shot off the dribble, and is a creative finisher around the basket. Barnes has stepped up his accuracy from the 3-point line, which will open up lanes for him to exploit and has the court vision to find teammates if the defense collapses.
7. 2024 6’3 Mikah Tolpezninkas (Immanuel/Reedley CA)
Tolpezninkas did exactly what you are supposed to do at a showcase, display the skills you excel at and he did just that. Tolpezninkas is best known for his ability to score in volume, specifically from beyond the arc. He came out firing with 23 points to lead Team CSUB in a win, before connecting on 6 threes in his second game scoring 18 points to be one of the top 5 scorers of the event. Tolpezninkas has good size and moves to create space from his defender, is a lights-out shooter from the 3-point line, scores in volume, and does a solid job on the glass to push the ball in the open court. Tolpezninkas has the size and lift to shoot over most perimeter defenders, and the size to bully past smaller guards and with his shooting ability he is a tough match-up for defenses.
8. 2026 6’6 Jensen Hirschkorn (Kingsburg/CA)
Hirschkorn is one of the top baseball prospects in the Central Section but reminded anyone who may have forgotten he is still a problem on the basketball court and impacts both ends. Hirschkorn was productive scoring the ball, with games of 16 points and 18 points respectively. Hirschkorn uses his length and instincts to be an effective shot blocker and rim protector, is active on the glass with the handle to push the ball, and has great touch on shots around the basket. Hirschkorn sees the court well, makes good passes from the high post, and can space the floor with the 3-ball. Despite being an elite baseball prospect, Hirschkorn has the game and skill set to be a next-level prospect in hoops as well, and that is with limited time to work on his game. Underrated athlete that has a high IQ.
9. 2026 6’9 Jackson Scarborough (Clovis/CA)
Scarborough is one of the top 2026 prospects in the Central Section and at the event showed he is one of the top prospects in the Section regardless of class. Scarborough had 10 points in his first game before going for 19 points in his 2nd game connecting on 5 threes in the process to show his versatility as an offensive weapon. Scarborough is one of the top shot blockers and rim protectors in the Section, as he is able to defend in the post as well as stepping out to defend on the perimeter. Scarborough dominates the glass, has good handles to push the pace of play in the open court, has the court vision to make plays from the high post, and has nice touch on shots within 15 feet. He is rapidly improving his jumper from the mid-range to the 3-point line, as was evident by his 5 threes in his 2nd game. The long-term projection of Scarborough as a true wing/forward is Division 1.
10. 2025 6’8 Caden Lloyd (Central Valley Christian/Visalia CA)
Lloyd asserted himself early and often as a force in the paint and was the most dominant big man in the showcase. Lloyd showed his touch and skill within fifteen feet in his opening game, as he would go for 22 points and 10 rebounds to put down one of the better single-game performances of the event. Lloyd followed that up with 10 points in his 2nd game and was named the top post-player of the showcase. Lloyd has good footwork, nice back-to-the-basket moves, is accurate with the mid-range shot, good hands around the basket, and runs the floor well for finishes in the open court. Lloyd controls the glass, is a serviceable rim protector, and will be fun to watch in pick-and-roll situations with freshman lead guard AJ Johnson for the Cavaliers.
11. 2024 6’6 Sylarr Redwood (Roosevelt/Fresno CA)
Redwood was one of the most athletic players at the showcase and made that known with countless high-flying dunks off the bounce and the lob, as he was one of the top stock risers from the event. Redwood had games of 15 points and 10 points respectively in his two showcase games and is a key addition for Roosevelt this upcoming season, after transferring from Clovis West. Redwood has the ideal length and build that college coaches look for in a prospect and now he has added the skill set to complement his tangibles. Redwood has improved his handles combined with the moves to create off the wing, uses his length to get by his defender, and was looking to punch anything near the basket. Redwood is solid on the glass, can push the pace in the open court, and has improved his accuracy from the 3-point line off the dribble. I was fortunate to see Redwood during the club season and look forward to seeing what he can add to his new team.
12. 2025 6’ Nolan Birchall (Clovis North/Fresno CA)
Birchall always makes the most out of the showcase events he has attended and this time was no different, as he would display his ability to knock down perimeter shots and disruptive on the defensive end generating steals to get into the open court. Birchall had a strong showing in his opening game, as he would go for 18 points. He would add another 12 points in his final game and made some nifty passes to teammates DJ Stickman in the open court and post-entry passes to bigs Caden Lloyd and Zach Garnett. Birchall has solid handles and moves to create off the dribble, makes good use of the hesitation to generate space from his defender, is accurate with the 3-ball off the dribble or the catch and shoot, and is a creative finisher around the basket. Birchall is an active on-ball defender, has quick hands to poke the ball out, and foot speed to stay in front of opposing perimeter players. Always shows up and plays with a great motor.
13. 2024 6’4 Va’Ron Mitchell (Edison/Fresno CA)
Mitchell relentlessly attacked the basket throughout the event and had some entertaining dunks, as well as some flashy passes showing off his court vision. Mitchell did not score in volume in his first game, but showed his ability to impact the game on the glass, making plays to open teammates, and altering shots on the wing. Mitchell got it going in his 2nd game, as he would finish with 19 points and was attacking the paint getting downhill with ease. Mitchell is accurate from the perimeter, can space the floor with the 3-ball, has the handles and moves to attack off the dribble, and has the physical build to bully through traffic in the paint. Mitchell can back down smaller players, and has the moves to blow by bigger defenders when they over-pursue. Talented player that impacts the game in various ways.
14. 2025 6’5 Zach Garnett (Frontier/Bakersfield CA)
Garnett was one of only two players to attend the showcase from the South Valley and he made the most of his opportunity, as he would display improved accuracy with the mid-range jumper from the top of the key and more fluid on-court movement. Garnett would score 16 points in his first game and 8 points in his 2nd game and was active on the boards to provide second-chance opportunities. Garnett has good footwork in the paint, nice moves to score around the basket, controls the boards on both ends with enough handle to push the ball up the court, and has impressive court vision to make plays from the top of the key or in high-low situations with other bigs. Garnett has good touch on his jumper, has the size to shoot over smaller defenders, can put the ball on the deck to attack the basket, and has a good feel around the basket to finish through contact. He will be a huge piece for the Titans this upcoming season and should average near a double-double.
15. 2025 6’1 Arman Arisian (Clovis North/Fresno CA)
Arisian came into this event looking to display his ability to create his own shots and score the ball, along with the other attributes of his game that make him a valuable asset for the Broncos. Arisian had games of 12 points and 11 points respectively and scored the ball from all 3-levels. Arisian has good handles, changes the pace of play to keep his defender off balance, has good body control in the air to finish through contact, and has the court vision to find open players when on the attack. Defensively, Arisian has active hands and gets into his opponent’s dribbling space to create turnovers. Relentless motor and tough-minded player.
16. 2024 6’4 Justin Stroud (Central Valley Christian/Visalia CA)
Stroud got going in his 2nd game and showed his versatility as a scorer, as he finished with 21 points. Stroud has a solid frame, moves to create off the dribble, is accurate with the jumper, and can space the floor with the 3-ball. Stroud does a solid job on the glass, has the handles to push the ball up the court, and absorbs contact through traffic. Stroud will be a key piece for the Cavaliers this upcoming season, as he was a double-double machine last season.
17. 2025 6’6 Dallin Crawford (Frontier/Bakersfield CA)
Crawford was the other player from Bakersfield in attendance and although he does not dazzle with creative moves and shots off the perimeter, he did a great job of showcasing his strengths as a forward. Crawford had a solid first game finishing with 12 points followed by a 6-point game. Crawford is solid on the glass, finds openings in the defense around the basket, has nice touch on finishes at the rim, and plays within his skill set, which is always refreshing to see. Crawford runs the floor well in the open court and uses his length and height to effectively alter and block shots at the rim. He will be a huge piece for the Titans in the high-low sets with Garnett.
18. 2027 5’11 AJ Johnson (Central Valley Christian/Visalia CA)
Johnson made a big impression on the eyes in the gym as he displayed high-level lead guard play. The freshman did not look to score much but was making plays all night, showing off the court vision, dynamic handles, shifty moves to break down his defender, and pin-point passes to teammates when forcing the defense to collapse. Johnson is capable of scoring in volume and creating his own shots off the dribble, as I see a lot of similarities between his game and top senior prospect Connor Amundsen. Bright future ahead for the young lead guard.
19. 2025 5’11 Carlos Blancaz (Kingsburg/CA)
Blancaz ended the event in style, as he connected on 6 threes going for 18 points. Blancaz has improved his handles, moves well off the ball to get open looks, and generates space to create shots off the dribble. Blancaz will be a needed weapon for the Vikings to keep defenses honest given the size on the roster.
20. 2025 6’7 Gus Swenning (Clovis North/Fresno CA)
Swenning had a solid showing at our Prospect Preview Showcase last May and made a great first impression on myself and other media in attendance. Swenning displayed his offensive versatility at this event as well, as he would score 10 points in his first game and 8 points in his 2nd game with 3 threes overall. Swenning is active on the boards, has the handle to push the ball up the court, is effective with the 3-ball off the dribble or the catch-and-shoot, and excels in the open court with some strong finishes above the rim. Swenning has good moves to create off the wing, as well as back-to-the-basket moves to score in the paint. Swenning has the size and frame that coaches look for at the next level and his best basketball is ahead of him as long as he puts in the work to keep developing as a wing/forward.
21. 2024 6’1 Brandon Ezell (Central/Fresno CA)
Ezell was one of the better 3-point shooters at the event, as he would hit on 6 threes over his two games. Ezell scored 9 points in his first game but showed more variety as a scorer in his 2nd game with 15 points connecting on 3 threes. Ezell has a smooth stroke of his jumper, can create off the dribble or make shots off the catch and shoot, and has a nice pull-up mid-range shot. Ezell could be a key piece for the Grizzlies this season, as they have a physical and athletic team that needs someone to space the floor.
22. 2024 6’6 Isaak Smith (Kingsburg/CA)
Smith was one of the more dominant players in the post at the showcase, as he has gotten into better shape and much more agile around the basket. Smith had 11 points in his first game, as he backed down his defender close to the basket and showed he can space the floor with the 3-ball. Smith did a great job on the boards, provides second-chance opportunities on the offensive glass, and has nice touch around the cup. Smith has made major strides in his game since last season and will anchor the paint for the Vikings this upcoming season.
23. 2024 6’4 Kenneth White (Central/Fresno CA)
White used his size and physical frame to bully opponents around the basket and showed good touch around the basket. White had games of 6 points and 8 points respectively but was a beast on the boards and made it tough for opposing bigs to operate in the post. White runs the floor well in the open court, can finish through contact at the basket, controls the boards, and is athletic enough to switch off on smaller players and the build to hold his own against taller players. Good motor and plays with passion.
24. 2025 6’3 Giovanni Cadenasso (Clovis North/CA)
Cadenasso had two solid games at the event, as he would score 11 points and 9 points respectively. Cadenasso is accurate with the 3-ball off the catch and shoot, has enough moves and handles to create off the perimeter, has nice touch on his shot within fifteen feet, and is a creative finisher around the basket. Cadenasso does a solid job on the boards, can push the pace of play, and is another under-the-radar guy for the Broncos that could be a useful piece with his size.
25. 2025 5’10 Jeremiah Posada (Selma/CA)
Posada came out the gates firing, as he would score all 13 of his points in the first half connecting on 3 threes. Posada added a pair of threes in his 2nd game to show he is a true threat from the perimeter off the dribble or the catch-and-shoot. Posada has good handles and shifty moves to create space to get open looks and has nice touch on his floater oversize in the paint.
26. 2025 6’7 Ry Atkins (Modesto Christian/CA)
Atkins displayed his versatility as a stretch four, as he connected on the 3-ball and showed his touch around the basket. Atkins controls the boards, has the handle to push the ball in the open court, is accurate from beyond the arc off the dribble, and has good court vision to find open teammates from the high post. Atkins has the moves and handles to create off the wing, and with his ability to space the floor, this opens up driving lanes to attack when bigger defenders overpursue. Solid pick-up for Modesto Christian.
27. 2025 6’1 Chance Hertel (Clovis West/Fresno CA)
Hertel was solid at our Prospect Preview Showcase back in May, where he was co-MVP of the Top 60 Game and kept that going with another solid showing at this showcase. Hertel had 10 points in his second game and highlighted his athleticism with a nice two-handed dunk in transition showing his bounce. Hertel has good handles, makes good use of the hesitation to get by his defender, and can knock down the 3-ball straight away or moving off the ball.
28. 2025 6’3 Beckham Klein (Fresno Christian/CA)
Klein had a relatively quiet opening game but got it going in his 2nd game, as he would finish with 12 points scoring around the basket off the dribble and connecting on perimeter shots. Klein has good handles, the court vision to find open teammates when on the attack, and is a creative finisher around the basket. Klein has moves to create off the dribble and is accurate with the 3-ball. Versatile player that impacts various aspects of the game.
29. 2024 6’4 Brice Watley (Dinuba/CA)
Watley displayed his ability to impact various phases of the game at our recent showcase. I first saw Watley at our Prospect Preview Showcase back in May and was impressed with his productivity on both ends of the court. Watley highlighted those skills at this event, as he showed the ability to control the boards, score through contact at the basket, connect on the mid-range jumper, and the handles to push the ball off the glass. Watley has nice touch around the basket and has good court vision to make plays when pushing the ball up the court.
T-30. 2024 6’6 Kyshawn Johnson (Bullard/Fresno CA)
Johnson is poised to have a productive senior campaign with his ability to impact various aspects of the game, as was on display at the showcase. Johnson controls the glass, gets the ball to his guards, runs the floor well in the open court, and makes himself available for easy transition points. Johnson has a massive wingspan to alter shots and protect the basket, with the agility to step out and defend perimeter players. Johnson’s best basketball is ahead of him and will make some JUCO programs look genius for taking and continuing to develop his overall game.
T-30. 2024 5’10 Ronnie Roche (Kings Christian/Lemoore CA)
Roche had a solid second game, as he would finish with 13 points and scored it from the perimeter and at the basket off the dribble. Roche has good handles, plays with pace and control, sees the court well to find open players, and can knock down the 3-ball with accuracy.