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HUNTINGTON BEACH, Calif. -- With 16 teams and eight fields, it was impossible to see all the action at Saturday's Battle at the Beach, but we saw a lot and here are the top performers from the 7-on-7 event.
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BATTLE AT THE BEACH: TOP PERFORMERS
1. S/WR John Smith, Long Beach (Calif.) Poly
Smith turned in arguably his best performance this offseason. Early in the day against powerhouse Serra, the four-star standout caught two touchdown passes at receiver and picked off a pass playing safety. There are times when Smith gets lost in the shuffle, but he has the ability to dominate on both sides of the ball. He looked unstoppable at receiver and safety.
Boise StateClick 2. WR Shay Fields, Bellflower (Calif.) St. John Bosco Here to view this Link. is getting a serious steal in Fields, who has the pass-catching ability and game-breaking athleticism to contribute in the Pac-12. Fields' best catch of the day came late against Mater Dei, when he took an intermediate pass and made a slick move to get by two defenders without getting touched. Numerous times, he broke deep for long receptions that led to touchdowns.
3. QB Josh Rosen, Bellflower (Calif.) St. John Bosco
This was not Rosen's best day and it looks like his arm could use rest leading up to the season, but the 2015 quarterback is such a phenomenal player that he understands where the ball should go and he's got such a good grasp of everything going on around him that he was still impressive. Rosen hit receivers all over the field all day, Fields being his favorite target, and he continues to prove he's one of the top players in the 2015 class.
Wadood continues to bulk up physically; no longer are people worried about him being too thin to contribute on the college level, and he's proven he can do things on offense, defense and special teams. One of the main reasons he picked CaliforniaClick 4. DB/WR Jaleel Wadood, Bellflower (Calif.) St. John Bosco Here to view this Link. is that it's going to give him a shot at safety, where he feels most comfortable, but it's not out of the question he could be used as a receiver, too. Wadood makes plays when he's on the field, and he did that this weekend.
5. WR Greyson Bankhead, Corona (Calif.) Centennial
Bankhead is undersized, but the 2015 prospect is a perfect fit in Centennial's uptempo offense. He was unstoppable at times, even against outstanding defenses. He can catch a short pass and run, and he can sneak behind defenders and catch the long bomb for a touchdown. By our count he had at least 10 touchdowns on the day, and if he grows more he could be a serious prospect.
6. DB Iman Marshall, Long Beach (Calif.) Poly
Marshall had a beautiful interception early against Serra, and he locked down receivers all day. The 2015 prospect has this special ability to seemingly know where the receiver is going, stick with him and not get a lot of action his way because quarterbacks don't want to test him. Marshall plays with a lot of aggressiveness and confidence, and he shut down receivers all day.
Hale talks a good game and backs it up. He shut down UCLAClick 7. DB Naijiel Hale, Bellflower (Calif.) St. John Bosco Here to view this Link. commit Barry WareClick 7. DB Naijiel Hale, Bellflower (Calif.) St. John Bosco Here to view this Link. during the Bosco-Centennial matchup. He gave the Mater Dei receivers nothing. All day, Hale knocked down passes, played great defense on long passes and did an excellent job in coverage. He breaks on the ball really well and does a great job with his hands once the receiver tries to bring the ball in.
Morgan could be one of the next stars at Bosco. The 2016 prospect has an offer from VanderbiltClick 8. DB D.J. Morgan, Bellflower (Calif.) St. John Bosco Here to view this Link. and interest from USCClick 8. DB D.J. Morgan, Bellflower (Calif.) St. John Bosco Here to view this Link. and OregonClick 8. DB D.J. Morgan, Bellflower (Calif.) St. John Bosco Here to view this Link., and it's easy to see why there's so much early involvement. Morgan played safety during the tournament. He's long, rangy and wiry, he gets to the ball well, and he has the ability to leap and knock the ball down and make it difficult for all receivers. Because he's 6-foot-2 and 185 pounds, Morgan covers a lot of ground. He did a nice job of making Hale and Wadood look good with over-the-top help.
9. CB/WR Adoree' Jackson, Gardena (Calif.) Serra
This was not Jackson's best performance, and this was not Serra's best performance -- that team has the talent to beat anybody on any day -- but still the five-star prospect is something special on both sides of the ball. Jackson likes to mix it up at receiver and corner, and he's such a phenomenal athlete he can make something special happen at any time, like when he leaped an insane height to bring down a badly thrown ball with one hand for one of the day's best catches.
10. WR/LB Ben Humphreys, Santa Ana (Calif.) Mater Dei
There has been a lot of chatter this summer about Humphreys, but he didn't turn in a memorable performance at the UCLA camp a few weeks back. At this tournament, playing with his high school team, it was clear Humphreys could be a nice talent moving forward. At wide receiver, the 2015 prospect covers a lot of ground and he can get behind corners and make really nice plays. At linebacker, he has the speed and athleticism to knock down passes and he's physical enough to jam receivers off their routes. Offers should be coming soon.
11. TE Kyle Penniston, Santa Ana (Calif.) Mater Dei
Penniston is becoming a technician at tight end, someone who knows exactly what to do at the position, is very well-coached and takes that coaching and implements it into his game. He didn't do anything spectacular at this tournament, but all game he was getting open, being a big target for his quarterback, and the 2015 recruit never, ever drops passes.
12. WR Gregory Webb, Gardena (Calif.) Serra
Serra turned in a lackluster performance in this tournament, one that could have been a blockbuster finish between Serra and St. John Bosco, but Webb was one of the team's best receivers and he made a bunch of nice catches. His best reception was a diving, fingertip touchdown grab in one of Serra's final games. With so many high-profile recruits, Webb could get lost in the shuffle, but he has nice size and a lot of talent and his recruitment could get busy this fall.
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