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July 12, 2014

Tooley ready to shine

Life is hopefully a matter of continuous learning for all so add two items to your checklist: Granite Bay, California is not on the ocean coast as it sounds like it should be and Charlie Tooley is a 2016 prospect to watch.

The town is actually located in Placer County very near Folsom Lake (hence the name) and the 6-foot-2 Tooley played both on varsity this season and as a starter for Granite Bay, displaying intensity and an offensive game beyond his years.

As a sign of things to come, he led the Grizzlies in scoring with 18 points during the matchup with Freedom High in the Nor Cal Tip Off Classic and Tooley's season-long efforts earned him Second Team Sierra Foothill League basketball honors.

He is with the Play Hard Play Smart (PHPS) Renegades this summer and PHPS Coach Lester Diaz sees his youngster as an indispensable sort of sleeper. "Charlie Hustle is the kind of player that you have to have cause he plays so hard and smart that is difficult to keep him off the floor. Colleges are taking notice too. He's only a junior so he will get better."

What will be waking up Tooley's reputation is what he offered as his best basketball skills: "energy, passion and being a good shooter who attacks the basket and gets everyone involved."

Do remember this is someone who just finished his sophomore year and, despite his youth, he already has demonstrated a willingness and proficiency to perform in different roles.

"I'm relied on to score more and be a leader in charge" with Granite Bay and Coach Jason Sitterud while it's acting "as a verbal energizer" who works to bring out the best in his Renegade teammates.

Despite just completing his underclassmen years, Tooley already sees improvement in his game.

"In my freshman year, I wasn't as controlled as I am now. I would attack the rim but be out of control."

Don't call it subdued, just more proficient.

He also already has a career highlight moment, one involving icing a win for Granite Bay.

"It was last year in a home game before a huge crowd of family and friends and with the student section packed. We were up by two with five seconds left and I hit two free throws." That paved the way for the Grizzlies' 47-43 victory over Rocklin.

As to what he wants to demonstrate during July "is prove to the college coaches that I'm not just a little guy who is a sleeper anymore. That will take showing up and producing."

Just what does Tooley envision for Granite Bay in the 2014-15 season?

"We lost eight seniors but I think we'll be competitive. We've been putting in the work." Due to realignment, the Sierra Foothill League now contains such opponents as Oak Ridge, Folsom and Woodcreek.


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