Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Former Stepinac Star Guerra Still Hungry

Ky Guerra was one of the least acclaimed recruits at the CYP tournament in Port Chester this weekend, albeit the former Stepinac star thrived.

Flanked by high-profile Division-I talent such as Jordan Tucker, Rawle Alkins and Mamadou Diallo throughout tourney, the 5-foot-11 Guerra registered his presence with a 14-point second half in team High-Major's 78-74 victory over the Westchester/Harlem Jets.

Beacon native and former Kennedy Catholic star Elijah Hughes was the catalyst for High Major, dropping 25 points and showcasing improved and fearless shooting ability.

Hughes, headed to East Carolina, was one of the Westchester area's most dynamic guards before bolting for South Kent Prep (CT).

 Guerra, who spent a post-graduate year at The Kent School after a high-scoring senior season at Stepinac, has transferred his role into more of an offense orchestrating point guard.

At Stepinac, where he held a 93 GPA, Guerra shredded box-and-ones and displayed deep shooting range.

"I think my point guard skills became more defined," said Guerra of his transitioned role at The Kent School.

"I was definitely a point guard before. At Kent, I was able to showcase my passing ability, finding shooters and cutters and also displaying a very improved ball-handling ability as well as managing the game and controlling the pace."

During his stay at Stepinac, Guerra starred alongside 6-foot-8 sharpshooter Tucker.

Tucker, who upped his profile following a performance at the NBA Top 100 camp last summer, remains one of the nation's most prized recruits.

At Kent, Guerra's team was bolstered by balance.

He began to take more responsibility in creating and took a strong sense of pride in bettering his teammates.

The result was an All New England selection.

"He morphed into more of a playmaker and he can still shoot the hell out of the ball," said High-Major coach Tom Sampogna.

"I think (the prep year) was a huge improvement for Ky. He's a legit 5-foot-11 right now. He's put on some weight, about 10-15 pounds, so he's a solid 160. He put up a lot of points (at Stepinac) playing against the Molloys, the Christ the Kings. He's not losing any value on his recruiting. I think he can help some schools at the Northeast Conference level."

Guerra has high interest from St. Francis N.Y. in Brooklyn, where legendary Peekskill guard Ricky Cadell played. Sacred Heart University has also taken interest in Guerra.

"I think performing at CYP only shows that I can play with the best of them," Guerra said.

"I know how to play for my size and I know what my strengths are, so I always try to play under control. My IQ for the game sometimes takes over, where I don't worry about the talent level on the court with me. I just play my game."

At which future hardwood home will he play his game?

"I'm still looking for the best fit," Guerra said.

"I hope to land at a spot that gives me the best chance to excel athletically and academically."