Five players to watch Eastern Mass.
In this article:
The 2022-23 high school basketball campaign is still a couple of months away. But with so many talented players showcasing their skills throughout the summer, now’s as good a time as any to take a quick dive into some names…
The 2022-23 high school basketball campaign is still a couple of months away. But with so many talented players showcasing their skills throughout the summer, now’s as good a time as any to take a quick dive into some names that could be poised for big winter seasons on the hardwood. Here’s a look at five players to keep an eye from Eastern Massachusetts.
With standout swingman and Division 1 college prospecttransferring to Phillips Exeter, as well as sharpshooting guard Dylan Crowley graduating, Klass will unquestionably take on a bigger role for Beverly High this winter. Although a bit undersized, Klass plays big. He earned significant minutes as a freshman last year for a strong Panthers team that made a run to the MIAA Division 1 Round of 16, and will almost certainly be thrust into a starting role this coming season. A smooth lefty, Klass is comfortable and crafty with the ball in his hands. He knows how to pick his spots as far as when to attack or dish the ball, and his shot has drastically improved in recent years. Klass had a tremendous summer season playing in the ever-competitive “Props 2 Pops” outdoor league in Salem, MA, helping his team capture a championship in the 15-and-under division while dropping 40 points in the clincher.
Warren Keel Jr.
Warren Keel Jr.
An exceptional athlete with tremendous feel for the game, Keel Jr. lit the state on fire last winter by averaging over 25 points per game at Lynn English High. He’ll transfer to Bradford Christian Academy this year to team up with his AAU coach, Vin Pastore. Keel Jr. has everything you want from a point guard: great handles, strong court vision, the ability to attack off the dribble and finish at the rim or pull up on a dime, and he also rebounds quite well for his size. He isn’t afraid to challenge bigs in the paint and can burn defenses with his outside jumper as well. Keel Jr. dazzled in the outdoor league “Props 2 Pops” in Salem, MA this summer, putting up multiple 30-plus point efforts including a 34-point outburst in a championship clinching victory in the 18-and-under division.
He has already received interest from multiple Division 1 programs while getting an official offer from Rutgers. Keel Jr. will be a welcome addition to an already stacked Bradford Christian Team.
A three-level scorer with impressive bounce, Abreu should see his stock rise even further this coming season. He boasts elite speed and quickness, both with or without the ball in his hands, and regularly weaves his way through traffic before finishing creatively at the rim. He’s a feisty defender who moves his feet well on that side of the ball. Abreu’s mid range game is perhaps his best asset, however; that was on full display this summer when he knocked down shot after shot to break the single game scoring record in Salem, MA’s “Props 2 Pops” outdoor league by dropping 54 points. His smooth release extends beyond the 3-point arc as well.
Two-way presence is a workhorse, always looking for ways to improve and help his team win games. He boasts an impressive skill package that’s highlighted by his effective mid-range game and rebounding prowess. Lynch was a First-Team All-Eastern Independent League selection at Pingree last year as well as a NEPSAC Honorable Mention. He averaged over 14 points and nine rebounds per game for a well balanced lineup, shooting 49 percent from the field and 85 percent from the free throw line. At 6-foot-6 he even showed off his range by cashing in on better than 35 percent of his 3-point attempts. Lynch helped Pingree qualify for the NEPSAC Class B tournament for the first time ever in 2023 and will be a key starter for the Highlanders once again this winter.
Southpaw sniper was a consistent bright spot for a young Bishop Fenwick team last year and will look to carry the load offensively in 2023-24. A prototypical shooting specialist, Meklis averaged nearly 18 points per game last winter while drilling 66 triples in 19 games. He scored over 30 points twice and was named a Catholic Central League all-star. Meklis has an incredibly smooth release with good elevation and doesn’t need much space to get his shot off. He has a good handle and doesn’t force things offensively. Meklis can score at the rim too but it’s certainly his shooting that makes him stand out.