Last season, Shelby County freshman Darryl Hicks made headlines when he scored 30 points in the boys KHSAA Sweet 16 against Ballard. This season the Bruins have a two freshman that have two freshmen that are making a huge impact. Quinton Snyder and Kelen Martin have helped lead the Bruins to a 5-0 start. Both Snyder and Martin were invited to play at the prestigious Fab Frosh Camp in Chicago in July.
"Both Quinton and Kelan are advanced for freshmen," Ballard coach Chris Renner said. "Not only do they have a very high level of skill, they both have a solid understanding of how to play. They certainly have been seasoned by what their parents have taught them, by the training they have received, and by the AAU programs they have played on. Both players have a strong chance to start and both will likely play a big role on our team. I'm not sure if either player would have been a potential starter on any of my top eight teams I've had at Ballard, but the reality is that they have a strong chance this year. I have only regularly started five sophomores and zero freshmen in my 12 years at Ballard. There is a real possibility that we will start two freshmen and two sophomores much of this year."
Snyder, a 6-foot-0 point guard, is extremely quick with the ball. He's a great ball handler, who sees the floor well. He can get to the rim or find the open man. He averaged just over seven points per game last season, as an eighth grader at Fern Creek. As he matures and gets stronger, Snyder's potential is unlimited.
"He can score taking it to the basket, with the pull-up, or knock down the three," Renner said. "He truly has a complete game. He also has a year of seasoning playing varsity at Fern Creek as an eighth grader. In all likelihood he will start at point guard for us and we will move Devante Parker to the wing. As "Q" gains strength and experience, he is a potential high Division I player."
At 6-foot-5, Martin has the ability to dominate in the post or step out on the perimeter and knock down the open jumper.
"Kalen's skill set is what separates him from other 6-foot-5 players," Renner said. "Not many young big kids can play out on the floor like he can. He doesn't quite have the experience that "Q" has but playing on a high level AAU program has helped him."
Photo of Kalen Martin