HoopGroup Southern Jam Fest: Class of 2027 Standouts (Pt. 1)
Hampton, VA — Prep Hoops Next was posted up in the 757 this past weekend for one of the most esteemed, non-live period events on the grassroots basketball spring calendar. The Hoop Group Southern Jam Fest brought together a myriad…
Hampton, VA — Prep Hoops Next was posted up in the 757 this past weekend for one of the most esteemed, non-live period events on the grassroots basketball spring calendar. The Hoop Group Southern Jam Fest brought together a myriad of talented teams from various shoe circuits and top independent programs for three days of competitive hoops in the Tidewater region. Due to the amount of high-level, eighth-grade talent on display, we’ll be breaking down tournament coverage into three features, listing the top Class of 2027 performers alphabetically. Here’s our first handful of memorable performers from the event…
A 5-foot-10 guard set to begin his high school career in a few months at Bishop O’Connell (VA) High School, Asare’s maturity, strength, and relentless approach were noteworthy throughout the Hoop Group Southern Jam Fest. The Team Takeover gritty floor general has emerged as a leader for his team and his physicality is a separator amongst his peer group at this stage. Asare consistently found ways to create paint touches and put the ball in the basket, as he navigated through tight spaces, and finished effectively in traffic. Whether it was a smooth mid-range jumper, a quick-release three-pointer, or an explosive drive to the rim, Asare’s offensive repertoire was diverse and impactful on this particular weekend.
Better known as “Bam”, Daylen Bolding was another noteworthy backcourt standout for Team Takeover at the Hoop Group Southern Jam Fest. Blessed with a tremendous frame, Bolding’s length and command of the ball off the bounce allowed him to effectively impact play at both ends of the court. Quickly making a name for himself as a shotmaker in the DMV region, the six-foot guard appears primed for additional growth physically, and his confidence is trending in the right direction. His upside should certainly excite the staff at DeMatha Catholic (MD) High School, where Bolding is expected to enroll as a freshman this fall.
Cam Claiborne was a key player from Team Loaded (VA) over the weekend, filling an important perimeter scoring role in their 8th Grade/14U Championship run at the Hoop Group Southern Jam Fest. The 5-foot-10 combo guard displayed remarkable accuracy and confidence with respect to his outside shooting during his time in Hampton but also showcased his versatility with timely passing and defensive effort. Claiborne’s penchant for making winning plays in addition to his outside shooting ability should make him a valuable contributor for even the most competitive high school team in the coming months and years.
Josh Conti and his Garner Road Basketball Club teammates were perhaps the biggest surprise of the weekend as they advanced to the Hoop Group Southern Jam Fest 8th Grade/14U title game. Conti’s well-rounded skills proved effective throughout the event, as he exhibited his ability to be an efficient scorer and playmaker for his squad. A versatile threat, the 6-foot-1 forward operated from both the post and perimeter, exhibiting composure, decision-making, and adaptability while thriving in high-pressure scenarios. The North Carolina native maneuvered through defenses aimed exclusively at stopping him with relative ease and his overall production from start to finish could simply not be ignored.
It is no coincidence that Team Takeover has stolen the majority of the headlines in the first edition of our standout performers from the Hoop Group Southern Jam Fest as their Class of 2027 backcourt was simply dominant throughout the weekend. For his part, Darrel Davis blended superior ball-handling with a reliable shooting stroke, igniting his team to several impressive victories. His ability to control the pace of the game looked effortless as he consistently maintained composure when faced with intense and relentless defensive pressure. Overall, the 5-foot-9 guard’s speed and fearlessness make him difficult to contain off the bounce and his ability to knock down jumpers adds another dimension to his game that few of his counterparts possess at this stage of their development.
Stay tuned for more from Prep Hoops Next!