By Sean Moran
One week ago the National Prep Showcase tournament kicked off on Friday morning and in the third game of the day, 6’1” guard Christian Vital proved to be one of the top performers. The three-star guard from Queens Village, NY came off the bench for St. Thomas Moore (CT) and made an immediate impact against a talented Elev-8 Sports Institute team. In an 81-71 win, Vital finished with 20 points and 10 rebounds and went 6-12 from the field. His quickness and scoring abilities changed the course of the game and the fiery guard was an impact on both sides of the ball.
“I think I played well,” said Vital. “They had larger leads at times, but I think we did a really good job keeping our heads and getting back into it.”
When Vital came into the game he promptly hit a high arcing three from the left wing. He added in another three in the first half before he began attacking on both sides of the ball.
“My strengths are, well, I think I score the ball pretty well,” said Vital. “I think Coach knows that, which is why I am that spark off the bench and I just play hard. Coach tells me that I’m from New York so you gotta be a dog. That’s why I try to guard the best player. I took on number 30 who was hot at one point and then number 4 later in the game. I try to be the best player on offense and guard the best player on defense so that I can be versatile.”
As Vital noted he took on certain defensive responsibilities throughout the course of the game. When he came in, he was assigned the task of 6’0” sharp shooter J.T. Escobar who is headed to Ole Miss and scored 62 points in a scrimmage against Oak Hill. Vital stayed in his face and forced Escobar into a 2-8 performance from the three point line. Being from New York, Vital also liked to talk a bit of trash and frustrated his opponent, Jamal Gregory.
“That’s why we won,” said Vital. “I was in the game with 2 minutes left and I wasn’t. So it just shows you I know how to keep my head.”
As for schools, numerous coaches have taken notice of Vital’s skills.
“In the past few weeks Duquesne and Fordham have offered me, VCU has offered, St. Peter’s, Manhattan, and a lot of local schools. Basically the whole A-10 is recruiting me right now. Providence was out there and I took an unofficial visit there earlier in the school year. One of the assistants was out there today and saw me play pretty well so they might start picking it up.”
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