Area players invited to participate in Top 100 Showcase

INDIANAPOLIS — A host of area basketball players have been invited to participate in the IBCA/ IHSAA Top 100 Showcase later this month in Indianapolis.
Plymouth senior Mack Mercer, who recently competed in the IBCA’s Junior All-Star basketball series, as well as fellow Class of 2014 players Taylor Hatfield of Triton, Victoria Christlieb of Culver Girls Academy and Kayla Shaffer of Culver Community and Class of 2015 players Hunter Stevens of Plymouth and Loren Vukovitz of John Glenn, have been invited to the 11th annual showcase events, set for July 18 and 23 in Indianapolis. CGA head coach Gary Christlieb was also invited to participate as a coach in the girls event.
The Top 100 Showcase events are designed to give exposure to top basketball prospects from around the state to colleges across the state and nation. Players will rotate between drills at several different stations and will have the opportunity to compete against some of their fellow top prospects in three sessions of games. The Boys’ Showcase is scheduled for Thursday, July 18, and the Girls’ Showcase will take place Tuesday, July 23 at Ben Davis High School. Both NCAA-certified events are slated to begin at 2 p.m. and last until about 8 p.m.
Prior to the final game sessions, players will listen to guest speakers hold forth on the topic of what it means to be a high school player in the state of Indiana. Former Purdue and NBA player Brian Cardinal is scheduled to be the guest speaker for the Boys’ Showcase. He was a four-year standout for the Boilermakers, graduating in 2000, and followed with a 12-year career in the NBA, playing professionally with Detroit, Washington, Golden State, Memphis, Minnesota and Dallas. Purdue women’s basketball assistant coach Christy Smith will be the guest speaker for the Girls’ Showcase. Smith is a former Indiana All-Star from Benton Central who starred at the University of Arkansas and led the Razorbacks to the 1998 Women’s Final Four. She was drafted in 1998 by the Charlotte Sting and played two seasons in the WNBA.
In 2012, coaches from 64 colleges attended the Showcase events. Among them were coaches from NCAA Division I programs such as Ball State, Butler, Chicago State, Detroit Mercy, Evansville, Illinois-Chicago, Indiana, Indiana State, IPFW, IUPUI, Lamar, Loyola (Ill.), Morehead State (Ky.), Northern Illinois, Northern Kentucky, Saint Louis, Southern Illinois-Edwardsville, Valparaiso, Western Illinois and Wright State.