By Brendan Stiles
CORALVILLE, Iowa — At this time last year, Bryce Cartwright had just signed his letter of intent with Iowa and no one knew what to expect from him as he made the transition from junior college to the Big Ten.
On Tuesday, the senior point guard was selected first overall in the 2011 Prime Time League draft held at Monica’s, a restaurant owned by league commissioner Randy Larson. Uncertainty as to whether sophomore forward Melsahn Basabe will be able to play this summer as a result of his commitment to trying out for the USA U-19 squad playing in Latvia next month enabled Cartwright and a bevy of other Hawkeyes to be picked ahead of him.
Cartwright will be joined by freshman forward Gabe Olaseni on the Iowa City Ready Mix/L.L. Pelling squad this summer coached by Ray Swetalla. Olaseni was selected 12th overall.
Four of the remaining five first-round picks consisted of Iowa players — senior guard Matt Gatens second, senior forward Devon Archie third, incoming junior Anthony Hubbard fourth, and junior forward Eric May sixth. The fifth overall selection was used on former Northern Iowa guard Ali Farokhmanesh.
Culver’s/Iowa City Fitness, which is coached by Ron Nove, not only used the second pick on Gatens, but followed that up by taking freshman Aaron White 11th overall and then Basabe, who fell all the way to the 14th overall selection. Meanwhile, Archie will be teamed up on Kevin Sanders’ Hawkeye Title & Settlement/Vinton Merchants with sophomore guard Devyn Marble, as well as a duo of former Hawkeyes in Darryl Moore and Duez Henderson. Hubbard is the lone Iowa player past or present that will play for Coaches Corner/Three Rivers Bank this summer, a team coached by Kevin Lehman.
Sophomore forward Zach McCabe and redshirt freshman Darius Stokes join Farokhmanesh on the Jill Armstrong squad coached by Dan Ahrens. McCabe was the eighth overall pick in the PTL draft.
Larson’s Mike Gatens Real Estate/McCurry’s squad will feature May, senior forward Andrew Brommer, freshman guard Josh Oglesby, senior Jordan Stoermer, and former Iowa guard Jason Price.
The Prime Time League starts on June 19, with the opening game featuring Cartwright and Olaseni going head-to-head with Gatens and White at 3 p.m. in the North Liberty Community Center’s new gym. A pair of 4:30 p.m. contests follow with McCabe and Hubbard facing off in the Old Gym and the match-up featuring Archie and Marble against May, Brommer and Oglesby in the New Gym.
HAWKEYES IN THE PTL (team in parentheses):
1st (overall pick) — Bryce Cartwright (Iowa City Ready Mix/L.L. Pelling)
2nd — Matt Gatens (Culver’s/Iowa City Fitness)
3rd — Devon Archie (Hawkeye Title & Settlement/Vinton Merchants)
4th — Anthony Hubbard (Coaches Corner/Three Rivers Bank)
6th — Eric May (Mike Gatens Real Estate/McCurry’s)
7th — Andrew Brommer (Gatens/McCurry’s)
8th — Zach McCabe (Jill Armstrong)
10th — Devyn Marble (Title/Merchants)
11th — Aaron White (Culver’s/Fitness)
13th — Gabe Olaseni (Ready Mix/Pelling)
14th — Melsahn Basabe (Culver’s/Fitness)
15th — Darryl Moore* (Title/Merchants)
30th — Josh Oglesby (Gatens/McCurry’s)
31st — Jordan Stoermer (Gatens/McCurry’s)
34th — Duez Henderson* (Title/Merchants)
43rd — Jason Price* (Gatens/McCurry’s)
44th — Darius Stokes (Jill Armstrong)
* indicates former Iowa player