By Jeff Borzello
WASHINGTON D.C. – The class of 2014 is shaping up to be a dynamite high school class, especially at the point guard position.
One of the top lead guards in the class is Ja’Quan Newton, a 6-foot-2 prospect out of Neumann-Goretti in Philadelphia. At the Gonzaga DC Classic over the weekend, Newton was one of the best players. He averaged 19.7 points in three games, including 28 in the semifinals. While North Carolina-bound Nate Britt and host Gonzaga knocked off Newton’s troops in the championship game, he did solidify himself as a top-50 prospect in 2014.
“I played pretty good, considering it was the first game of the season,” Newton said after the tournament opener.
Newton is a very good scorer who can beat his defender off the bounce consistently. He knows how to get to the rim and finish, and his speed and quickness are a huge asset in transition. Newton is adept at drawing defenders in the lane and then finding open teammates for shots. Over the summer, Newton showed an ability to facilitate offense in the half-court with Team Final.
While he was able to knock down several jumpers at the event, he’s looking to improve his outside shooting.
“I’m working on my jumpshot and my defense,” Newton said. “Also, making my teammates better.”
In terms of recruiting, expect Newton to be a sought-after prospect over the next couple of years. He is already hearing from Rutgers, Villanova, Georgetown, North Carolina State, Maryland, Boston College, Saint Joseph’s and others.
Although he’s not planning to finish his recruitment soon, Newton has taken trips to Rutgers, Villanova and Saint Joseph’s.