Fresno, CA – This past Saturday, January 20th, I attended the annual Pagmeter Showcase held at Fresno Christian High School. The showcase featured 8 games with teams from various areas throughout the Central Section, along with NorCal powerhouse Modesto Christian as the non-Central Section team in attendance. Games started at 10 a.m. and ended with the final game of the event at 8:00 p.m. The marquee game of the showcase featured defending Division 2 State Champs San Joaquin Memorial of Fresno against Modesto Christian, who were the NorCal Open Champs just two years ago. 

In Game #6 of the event, a rematch of last year’s Central Section Division 3 title game, featured Sierra of Tollhouse and Kingsburg. Sierra standout senior Logan Kilbert, who just set the all-time career scoring record two weeks ago at the Sanger Central Valley Showdown, needed 11 points to be the first player to score 3,000 points in a high school career in Central California. Midway through the 2nd quarter, Kilbert hit a tough jumper from the free throw area for his 11th point and hitting the 3,000 point mark. Although he did not have one of his monster scoring outputs, the milestone achievement was one of the main highlights of the showcase and he added 18 points to help his team win. 

Although the event featured 8 games, I was only in attendance for 5 of the games. I arrived for Game 3 between Sierra Pacific of Hanford and Righetti of Santa Maria and left after Game 7 between Modesto Christian and San Joaquin Memorial. In this article I highlight 12 players I recognized as top performers from the one-day showcase. There were others that played well in the games I did not see, but this is a list of players I saw in person. The list of players is in alphabetical order and not ranked order. I have included the following information for each player: their name, school attended, height, graduation class, a short description of how they played at the event with relevant statistics, and a brief discussion of their skills. We begin with the host team’s point guard, Noah Coulton. 

6’ Noah Coulton 2026 Fresno Christian (CA)

Coulton is a crafty lead guard that has exceptional court vision, makes great use of the hesitation and redirection to keep his defender back peddling, and is effective scoring the ball from 3-levels. Coulton had a nice stat line in Fresno Christian’s loss to Central of Fresno, as he would score 13 points to go along with 5 rebounds and 5 assists. Coulton keeps the ball on a string, has dynamic handles and moves to create separation from his defender, plays with good pace and control with the ball in hand, and can hit shots off the dribble or getting open looks for catch and shoot opportunities. Really impressed with the skill set and confidence of Coulton, and he makes some impressive passes in tight windows and is a crafty finisher around the basket. 

6’7 Colin Dodd 2025 Sierra Pacific (Hanford CA)

Dodd was one of a handful of players that I was seeing for the first time live, but had heard about his game from people in the hoops community in the Central Section. Dodd was hobbled a bit with what looked like an ankle or calf injury but made his presence felt in the post in the minutes he logged, going for 12 points and 8 rebounds. Dodd has great touch around the basket, good hands to collect post entry passes, the footwork and post moves to score within 15 feet routinely, and is a serviceable rim protector. Despite moving a bit slower due to slight injury, Dodd did a solid job running the floor in the open court. 

6’2 Chayce Duerksen 2025 Sierra (Tollhouse CA)

Duerksen had a breakout game in Sierra’s 2-point win over last year’s Division 3 Section champs Kingsburg, as he would score a game-high 19 points with an even distribution of points per quarter. Although the highlight moment of the game was when teammate, and the Section’s all-time scoring leader, Logan Kilbert surpassed the 3,000 career point mark midway through the 2nd quarter, it was Duerksen’s pair of steals and 4 fourth quarter points that propelled the Chieftains to a win over the team that knocked them off in the Section title game last year. Duerksen plays with relentless energy on both ends of the court, is a solid on-ball perimeter defender, is effective from the 3-point line off the catch and shoot, and is able to finish through contact around the basket.  

6’ Branden Ezell 2024 Central (Fresno CA)

Ezell was red hot from beyond the arc in the Grizzlies win over host team Fresno Christian, by a score of 67 to 58. Ezell scored a game-high 31 points, knocking down 7 threes all before the 4th quarter. Ezell moves fluidly off the ball to get open looks, has a quick release to get his shot off before the defense closes out, and has the moves and handles to put the ball on the deck when defenders over pursue. Ezell has a smooth stop and pop mid-range jumper, is a creative finisher around the basket, and can score in volume quickly. Ezell’s perimeter shooting will be key for them to have success in the postseason. 

6’6 Devin Gaines 2026 Fresno Christian (CA)

Gaines is a lengthy and athletic wing/forward that excels in transition and is able to impact both ends of the court with his size and length. Gaines is active on the glass, alters shots in the post with the length and agility to close out on perimeter players, moves well off the ball, and was effective with the 3-ball off the catch and shoot. Gaines has enough handles and moves to create off the dribble, has good body control when attacking the basket, and has the length to rise up and shoot over most defenders. Gaines led the Eagles with 17 points and a pair of blocks in a tough loss to Central of Fresno, 67 to 58. 

6’7 Jensen Hirschkorn 2026 Kingsburg (CA)

Hirschkorn was cooking from beyond the arc, dominant on the boards, and generating steals that led to transition offense in the Vikings tough 2-point loss to Sierra of Tollhouse, in a rematch of last year’s Division 3 Section Championship. He finished with a team-high 16 points, connecting on 4 threes, to go along with 9 rebounds and 4 steals. The baseball standout showed improved shooting accuracy from the perimeter, good off ball movement to get open looks, and the height and length to shoot over most defenders. Hirschkorn does a solid job on the glass, is active protecting the rim in the post with the ability to close out on perimeter players, and has quick hands to strip the ball from opponents and outlet the ball to get up the court. Hirschkorn has nice touch around the basket, the court vision to make passes from the high-post, and has a smooth jumper he hits with accuracy. If Hirschkorn was able to focus on hoops only, he has the potential to be a top 5 prospect in his class. But can’t knock the focus on a sport he is already being labeled a pro prospect in.

6’ EJ Jefferson 2025 Central (Fresno CA)

Jefferson is a physical combo guard that likes to attack the basket with the ability to finish through contact at the rim. Jefferson has good handles, a nice burst of speed off the dribble, enough moves to create separation, and is effective with the mid-range jumper. He does a solid job on the glass, looks to push the pace of play in transition, and has the court vision to find open teammates when on the attack. Jefferson had 13 points, 7 rebounds, and 4 assists in the Grizzlies win over the Eagles of Fresno Christian. 

6’7 Drevon Johnson 2024 Modesto Christian (CA)

Johnson was one of the more dominant bigs at the Pagmeter Showcase, as he would go for 10 points and 7 rebounds in the Crusaders win over San Joaquin Memorial of Fresno, 66 to 52. Johnson is dominant on the glass, alters shots in the paint, has good touch on finishes around the basket, and runs the floor well in the open court. Johnson impacts the game on both ends and is an ideal fit for the style of play that Modesto Christian employs, which features the up and down play of guards like Sykes and Myles Jones and Johnson keeps pace and fills the lanes. 

5’11 Kaden Lopes 2024 Lemoore (CA)

Lopes is a crafty guard that plays solid on-ball defense, turns defense to offense with perimeter steals, and is accurate with the 3-ball. Lopes led all scorers in the Tigers win over Edison of Fresno with 24 points to go along with 5 rebounds and 6 assists in the 74 to 63 win. Lopes had a big second half, scoring 13 of his 24 points after the break and helped his team claw back from an 8 point deficit going into halftime. Lopes has solid handles, moves well off the ball to get open looks off the catch and shoot, has the court vision needed to make plays when on the attack, and keeps constant pressure on the defense. Great motor and capable of scoring in bunches. 

6’5 Julius Olanrewaju 2025 San Joaquin Memorial (Fresno CA)

Olanrewaju has established himself as the main scoring option for the Panthers this season and he displayed this in a major way against NorCal power Modesto Christian in the marquee game of the Pagmeter Showcase. Olanrewaju would score 14 of the Panther’s 24 first half points, and a game-high of 25 points to go along with his 7 rebounds in a loss to Modesto Christian, 66 to 52. Olanrewaju has solid handles, the moves to create separation from his defender, is accurate from the perimeter, and moves well off the ball for catch and shoot threes. Olanrewaju has shown improved play making skills and court vision to find open teammates from the top of the key or the high post, and remains at his best when hunting the mid-range jumper. He has also gotten more accurate finishing through traffic in the paint, as he has a solid frame and good body control. Olanrewaju is starting to put himself in the conversation of the top 3-5 players in the Section. 

6’4 Owen Parry 2025 Sierra Pacific (Hanford CA)

Parry had the hot hand for the Golden Bears in its 60 to 48 win over Righetti of Santa Maria, as he would finish with 23 points and connected on 4 threes in the process. Parry is a player I had not seen play in person and was not familiar with his game before the Pagmeter Showdown, but by halftime I was locked in on him for the remainder of the game. Parry has a smooth stroke from the perimeter, moves well off the ball to get open looks, is accurate with the 3-ball off the dribble or the catch and shoot, and has the height to shoot over most perimeter defenders. Parry has good handles and moves to create separation from his defender. Definitely a sleeper in the Central Section and a player I look forward to watching again over the next year. 

6’4 Gavin Sykes 2025 Modesto Chirstian (CA)

Sykes was one of the top players at the Pagmeter Showcase and led his team in scoring with 20 points and 6 rebounds in the Crusaders wins over San Joaquin Memorial of Fresno by a score of 66 to 52. Sykes plays with great pace and control with the ball in his hands, has dynamic handles and moves to create off the dribble, the body control to take and make tough perimeter shots off the bounce, and is effective with the 3-ball with good range. Sykes makes good use of the hesitation, keeps his defender back peddling and off balance, and has a quick first step when on the attack from the wing. He does a solid job on the glass, looks to push the pace of play in the open court, and has good court vision to find open teammates when pressuring the defense. Volume scorer that will be the lead catalyst for the Crusaders this year and next.