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International Spotlight: Stretch & Snatch- The Ultimate Triple Threat Wing

Wally Merrigan                                                                                                                                                                                                Wally Merrigan  @WallyMerrers23, 6'4 ,160 c/o 29 from St. Kevin's College Toorak (Melbourne, Victoria, Australia)                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       

Merrigan is a fierce wing who dominates the paint with nice footwork and an array of crafty finishes. He is long and lanky and uses that length to punish his opponents.  However, don’t be fooled, Wally isn't one dimensional by any stretch of the imagination. He is deadly consistent from mid-range, step out and he brings the rain from downtown. He is solid under the boards and is a tenacious defender who brings heavy pressure, who is able to defend the 2-5 effectively. He is a slick ball handler that uses his strength to go anywhere he wants on the court. With all of those strengths, I would still say that his greatest strength is his passing. He has an extremely high basketball IQ and has incredible court vision. He is a dazzling playmaker who drops some really sweet dimes, even on the move.

During this past season Wally averaged 16 points, 7 rebounds, 4 assists, 2 steals, and 1 block per game while shooting . 66% FG, 78 % FT, 36 % 3FG.. What he is most proud of is his team finishing third in the nation for 4 months. What motivates Wally the most is knowing there are better teams and better players out there, no matter how good that you are.  Being one of the most experienced players on the team this upcoming season, he knows he will have to be a strong leader. He fully understands that the team has to build trust and chemistry in order to be successful. His ultimate goal is that his team can win not only a state, but also National Championship.

Wally will be playing AAU for the Melbourne Tigers this upcoming season.  When asked what he most wants to work on, he said his three point shooting consistency, handling pressure, and working on defending better against smaller, quicker guards. He loves when an opposing player talks trash to him and all that does is add fuel to the fire that burns deeply inside of him. His biggest motivation is looking into the stands and seeing his parents there supporting him. When things aren’t going well for him or his team during a game, he has the maturity and focus, to take a deep breath, have “amnesia” and make any necessary adjustments. He is a leader that always pumps up his team and picks them up when things aren’t going their way during a game. He holds himself and his teammates to a very high level of accountability. Defensively, he will always pressure the ball handler and he makes sure to always try to mentally break his opponent with relentless hustle and energy Offensively, he is a great passer, slasher, and has handles for days.  

Wally sees himself as a high D2 to a low D1 player right now. He knows that being from Australia, it will be much harder to get eyes on him from scouts and coaches here in America. The thing that matters the most to him is making his family proud.  His overall skillset, high game IQ , passing and defensive swagger, certainly makes his future bright. He has a very high ceiling and overall I was tremendously impressed by this young man, With continued hard work, he most definitely has the chance to be a special talent and a rare, diamond in the rough, needle in a haystack type find for any coach.


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