Photo courtesy of Saben Lee.

For Saben Lee, stardom isn’t everything

Corona Del Sol High School has consistently been one of the top basketball programs in Arizona, but only in the past three years have Aztecs become a national powerhouse. Coach Sam Duane’s team finished with a record of 33-1 last season, and a major reason was the addition of point guard Saben Lee. Lee is a 6-foot-1 player from the class of 2017, and he has seen his stock take a huge jump during the live AAU period in July.

“This summer was a great experience,” said Lee, “It was one of the first club events where I played on that big of a stage in front of all those coaches and big name programs.”

Playing with Arizona Power, alongside Arizona’s top senior Mitch Lightfoot, Lee was able to pick up ten scholarship offers this summer. The part of his game that pops out instantly is his defensive abilities. Lee is able to constantly lock up opposing players and pick their pockets for an easy dunk on the other end. The point guard was also able to display his incredible floor vision and passing skills in July, something that is often overshadowed at Corona Del Sol as Lee plays alongside one of the top point guards on the West Coast, Alex Barcello.

“My biggest talent is the way that I can see the floor and getting my players involved,” he said, “Realizing when we need to score and what we need to win.  Basically, doing all the little things that are not in the stat book that helps us win as a team.”

To Lee, one very important thing in basketball is winning and success. With his level of talent, he could go to most high schools in the nation and be the outright best player, but he has made the decision to sacrifice stardom for the chance to play with some of the best high school athletes in the nation.

“Going through Corona and their coaching staff has definitely improved me as a player, and off the court as well. It is definitely about winning a lot, but it has also improved me with what I need to become as an all-around player,” the three-star recruit said, “Every day in practice I’m playing with one of the best guards on the West Coast. Getting to compete with Alex is definitely helping me to get where I want to be.”

For next season, Lee said he is setting goals for himself to accomplish on and off the court. He wants to raise his GPA by getting straight A’s, and he said on the court he wants to improve his jump shooting so he can take his game to the next level.

“I’ve been hitting my jump shot really hard ever since we got out of the live period,” said Lee, “Just working on that and making sure it is consistent for the next time coaches can watch me play.”

As for college, Lee has been offered by a multitude of schools out West including New Mexico, Weber State and reigning Big West champions UC Irvine. Although he said a decision is a long way away, he has taken a look at all the schools that have offered him.

“I’m basically looking at the relationship I have with the coaches and the type of style of play that their schools run,” he said, “I like to play in transition, fast paced, up and down.”

Wherever Lee ends up playing for his college career, there is no doubt he will be providing that team with a versatile point guard who can heavily impact the game on both ends of the floor.