TribHSSN boys basketball player of the week: Mt. Lebanon’s Jake Hoffman

Monday, December 16, 2019 | 10:36 PM

A great start by the defending WPIAL Class 6A boys basketball champions has been overshadowed a bit by an incredible statistical anomaly.

In each of the four Mt. Lebanon victories this season, senior Jake Hoffman has scored exactly 30 points.

“Jake’s 30 points in four games is very unique,” said veteran Mt. Lebanon coach Joey David. “I’m not sure that this task has been accomplished by anybody else possibly in history, where one player scores exactly 30 points in four straight games.”

Hoffman hasn’t exactly accomplished this rare feat against teams known for porous defenses.

Last week, his 30 points came in victories at North Allegheny and home against Pine-Richland.

“Hoffman did whatever he wanted,” Pine-Richland coach Jeff Ackermann said. “We did not do a good job defending him.”

David knows teams will now begin game planning to stop or slow down the 6-foot-3 guard.

“It’s early and I’m sure he’ll command a lot more attention from teams as we get through the season,” he said.”

Hoffman enjoyed success as a junior last year, playing a key role in the Blue Devils’ district title run. He averaged over 17 points per game.

Davis is hardly surprised though that Hoffman has taken his game to another level thus far this year.

“Jake’s game has gotten progressively better,” he said. “He’s put a lot of work in over the summer.”

Now Jake’s coach wishes more colleges would take notice of one of the districts leading scorers.

“A lot of colleges are sleeping on him,” David said. “I think he’s at least a Division II type player, but he hasn’t been exposed. You can’t keep talent under wraps that long; they’re going to find out who he is and where he is.

“More importantly, he’s a great young man off the court.”

The Blue Devils face another stiff challenge Tuesday in a rematch of the 2019 WPIAL finals when they travel to Butler to face Ethan Morton and the Golden Tornado on HSSN.

“I like where my team is at this point,” David said. “We have a lot of work to do and a lot of improvements to make.”

Honorable mention:

Tommy DiRenzo, Bethel Park

It was a big week for Bethel Park senior guard Ryan Meis, who scored 86 points in three games this past week. But he’ll take a back seat to his backcourt teammate, Tommy DiRenzo. The senior guard lit up the scoreboard on Monday with nine 3-pointers and a total of 51 points in the Black Hawks’ 107-80 victory.

Frank Stumpo, Keystone Oaks

Keystone Oaks is flying high at 3-1 overall thanks to the scoring touch of Frank Stumpo. The senior guard scored 40 points Wednesday in the Golden Eagles’ nonsection win over Freeport. KO then began Section 2-3A play Friday with a 20-point win over Fort Cherry as Stumpo dropped 28 points.

Camden Polak, Steel Valley

A year ago, Camden Polak averaged nearly 23 points per game in leading Steel Valley to the Class 3A playoffs. Last week, the senior guard averaged 36 points per game as he scored 33 in a win over Thomas Jefferson, 38 in a victory over Brashear and 37 points as the Ironmen began Section 3-3A play with a win over Valley.

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