The basketball talent in Nebraska is on the rise, and all season long, Hail Varsity will be tracking the in-state players with Division I offers, including those Nebraska is recruiting.
2021 Millard North Guard Hunter Sallis (Nebraska Target)
Millard North turned it on in the second half of both of its games last week and turned close games into 17-point victories at home.
On Friday, Millard North turned a two-point halftime deficit into a 75-58 win over rival Millard South. North outscored South 26-5 in the third quarter including a 24-0 run which Sallis sparked with seven straight on his own. He finished with 22 points on 8-of-13 from the field, 1-of-2 from 3 and 5-of-7 from the free-throw line, four rebounds, two assists, one steal and one block.
On Saturday, Lincoln Southeast gave the Mustangs a fight in the first half but the Mustangs won the second half 49-35 to earn a 78-61 win. Sallis scored 17 points on 6-of-12 shooting (0-of-4 from 3) and 5-of-5 free-throw shooing. He added six rebounds (three offensive), three assists, two steals, one block and one turnover.
2022 Millard North Forward Jasen Green (Nebraska Target)
On Friday, Green matched Sallis with 22 points on 10-of-12 from the field, 0-of-1 from 3 and 2-of-4 from the line. He grabbed two rebounds (one on each end of the court), blocked one shot and turned the ball over once.
He followed that up with 15 points on 7-of-11 shooting (1-of-3 from 3), four rebounds, two assists and one turnover.
Green has scored in double figures in five straight games and in eight of his last nine. He’s averaging 11.9 points, third on the team.
2020 Millard North Forward Max Murrell (Stanford Commit)
Murrell had another relatively quiet week, at least offensively.
On Friday, he scored four points on 2-of-4 shooting with six rebounds, four blocks, three steals, one assist and three turnovers. On Saturday, he had eight points on 4-of-5 shooting, four blocks, three rebounds, two steals, one assist and one turnover. He missed all three of his 3-point attempts and has now missed nine straight. He’s shooting 7-of-31 (22.6%) from deep this season.
This week, Millard North has another Millard-Lincoln back-to-back. On Friday, the Mustangs will play at Millard West and on Saturday, they’ll travel to Lincoln Northeast.
2020 Lincoln North Star Guard Donovan Williams
Lincoln North Star went 3-0 last week, but Williams only played in two of the games. The Gators beat Omaha Northwest 78-64 without him at home on Tuesday behind a combined 47 points, 21 rebounds and seven assists from junior guards Josh Brown and Kwat Abdelkarim.
Williams made up for lost time in the last two games, however. On Friday, he put up 34 points on 10-of-18 from the field and 9-of-12 from the foul line, six rebounds and one turnover in a 69-62 win at home against Lincoln Southwest.
On Saturday, he finished with 33 points on 12-of-21 from the field and 4-of-6 from the line, five rebounds, three steals, one assist and one turnover.
After shooting 5-of-28 from 3 in his three games the previous week, Williams lit it up last week, shooting 5-of-11 from 3 in both games. He doubled his 3-point make total on the season in two games.
North Star has two games this week, one at home and one on the road. On Friday, the Navigators will take on Lincoln Northeast. On Saturday, they’ll make the drive up I-80 to play at Bellevue West.
2020 Omaha Central Guard Latrell Wrightsell Jr.
Omaha Central got off to an 11- start this season, but after a rough week the Eagles are now sitting at 12-3.
On Tuesday, Bellevue West outscored Central 26-8 in the fourth quarter to earn a 74-67 win on the Eagles’ home court. Wrightsell led Central with 22 points on 7-of-15 from the field, 3-of-8 from 3 and 5-of-7 from the free-throw line, three assists, two rebounds, two steals and a turnover.
On Friday, the Eagles lost on a buzzer-beater at Creighton Prep, 64-62. Wrightsell went off for 29 points on 11-of-18 from the field, 0-of-4 from 3 and 7-of-7 from the foul line. He had seven rebounds (four offensive), three steals, two assists and three turnovers, and he hit the go-ahead layup with lust under 10 seconds to play.
His most impressive play came in the third quarter, however.
— Jermaine Blackson (@CoachBlackson) February 3, 2020
Central bounced back with a 74-55 win at Norfolk, but the Eagles had not uploaded a box score from that game at the time of publishing.
Central only has one game this week, but it’s a big one. The Eagles will play at reigning Class A state champion Omaha South on Friday.
2020 Omaha Westside Guard Jadin Booth (Omaha Commit)
Another week, another pair of 20-point outings from the future Maverick.
On Friday, Booth had a game-high 21 points on 7-of-12 from the field, 1-of-3 from 3 and 6-of-6 from the line, seven rebounds, three assists and a steal in an 88-66 win at Millard West.
On Saturday, the Warriors won at Bellevue East, 77-56. Booth put up 23 points on 8-of-17 from the field, 2-of-7 from 3 and 5-of-8 from the foul line, six assists, four steals, two rebounds and turnover.
On Tuesday, Westside will host Omaha South, and on Saturday, the Warriors will take on Lincoln Southwest.
2021 Bellevue West Point Guard Chucky Hepburn (Wisconsin Commit)
As mentioned above, Bellevue West pulled off a big comeback against Omaha Central on Tuesday, and Hepburn was the driving force behind that with 12 of his 24 points coming in the fourth quarter. He did most of his damage at the charity stripe, shooting 5-of-15 from the field (2-of-7 from 3) but 12-of-12 from the line. He also dished out four assists, noticed two rebounds and two steals and turned the ball over three times.
Bellevue West took on an overmatched Omaha Northwest team on Friday and didn’t need much from Hepburn to get a 79-57 win. He scored a career-low six points on 2-of-6 shooting including 1-of-3 from 3 and split a pair of free throws. He chipped in six assists, three rebounds, three steals and a block with three turnovers.
Bellevue West closed out the week with a 78-58 win at Omaha Bryan on Saturday. Hepburn didn’t have a great game but he Thunderbirds didn’t need him to in order to get the win. He contributed 12 points on 3-of-10 from the field, 0-of-2 from 3 and 6-of-8 from the line, six assists, four steals, two rebounds and two turnovers.
Last week, Kobe King, a starting guard for Wisconsin, left the program and cited frustration with coach Greg Gard that had built up throughout his career in Madison. However, Hepburn issued a message to Badgers fans on Twitter after King’s departure.
Patience.. Wisconsin basketball is going to be very tuff these next 5-6💯 #InGardwetrust
— Chucky Hepburn (@ChuckyHepburn) January 30, 2020
2021 Bellevue West Wing Frankie Fidler
The younger Fidler had two big games including his second career double-double, but he did not play int he win at Omaha Bryan on Saturday.
Against Omaha Central, Fidler recorded 19 points on 6-of-9 from the field 1-of-3 from 3 and 6-of-6 from the free-throw line, six rebounds and two steals, though he also turned the ball over four times.
Fidler followed that up with 16 points on 5-of-12 from the field, 1-of-4 from 3 and 5-of-8 from the line, a career-high 15 rebounds, four assists and two blocks with one turnover in the win against Omaha Northwest.
Bellevue West has three games this week. On Tuesday, the T-Birds will host Omaha North. On Friday they’ll play at Papillion-La Vista and on Saturday they’ll return home to face Lincoln North Star.
Jacob is in his third year with Hail Varsity covering Husker athletics. He has also written extensively for SB Nation’s Bright Side of the Sun and The Creightonian. His love of basketball can best be described as an obsession and if you need to find him, he’s probably in a gym somewhere watching, coaching or playing hoops.