"How I interacted with the players and coaches, they really showed they cared about me as a person," Lykes said in a Sunday phone interview. "And then when they got me to meet with the engineering program to show me how I could balance that with basketball, that showed me and my family that this was the right fit."
Lykes also took an official visit to defending national champion Villanova this month, saying the Wildcats were a close second among a final list that also included Georgetown, Notre Dame and VCU. But the notion of being the point guard in the mold of former Hurricane and current Brooklyn Net Shane Larkin on a team that set 900 ball screens last year resonated with Lykes.
"A lot of my playmaking ability comes off ball screens, so that, along with their up-tempo style of play, is big for me in knowing I can do well as a point guard with the ball in my hands at the next level," Lykes said.
After breaking out as a freshman, Lykes has continued his ascent as a player each year, erasing doubts about his diminutive frame along the way. His sophomore year, he helped lead the Eagles to the Washington Catholic Athletic Conference championship. This past winter, his first as Gonzaga's starting point guard, Lykes averaged 22 points and four assists to earn first-team All-Met as well as WCAC and D.C. Gatorade player of the year honors.
While Lykes studies the leadership of Los Angeles Clippers guard Chris Paul, his style of play resembles that of Oklahoma City Thunder point man Russell Westbrook. An explosive first step, deft ball handling, efficient shooting from behind the arc and the type of bounce that allows him to soar and maneuver for buckets in the paint make Lykes both an electrifying scorer and playmaker for his teammates, all of which will serve him well with the Hurricanes.
NUMBER CRUNCH: 24
Years since Park View boys' soccer last won a state championship before it beat Chancellor 1-0 in Saturday's Virginia 4A boys' soccer final.
PHOTO GALLERY OF THE DAY
After coming up short in the previous two Virginia 6A state finals, Chantilly's baseball team scored three runs with in the bottom of the seventh to beat Battlefield 3-2 for the title. Here's the story and just below are pictures from the wild victory:
BONUS PHOTO GALLERY OF THE DAY
Osbourn Park made the most of its first Virginia 6A softball state final appearance, defeating Madison, 4-0, to win the championship. Here's the story and below are photos from the Yellow Jackets' triumph.
VIDEO OF THE DAY
Robinson's girls' lacrosse team topped W.T. Woodson to win its second straight Virginia 6A crown. Read the story from the 13-9 triumph and check out the video below:
BONUS VIDEO OF THE DAY
Reid Scarborough had four goals as Robinson cruised to its third consecutive Virginia 6A boys' lacrosse title. Take a few minutes to read the story here and check out the tale of the tape below:
BREAKFAST LINKS FROM CHAMPIONSHIP WEEKEND
- Allyson Brown headed in a Liz Lazzaro kick to make the difference in Loudoun County’s 1-0 win against Salem for its second straight Virginia 4A girls’ soccer championship.
- Battlefield turned in a dominant performance en route to a 4-0 win against Cox and its third straight Virginia 6A girls’ soccer title.
- Eliot Mercado’s hat trick paced George Mason’s boys’ soccer team during its Virginia 2A state title win.
- Kyle Duffie’s overtime goal lifted Briar Woods to its first Virginia 5A boys’ lacrosse championship.
- Dominion capped an unbeaten season by rolling past Western Albemarle in the Virginia boys’ lacrosse state final.
- Camryn Dalby had eight RBI, struck out 15 and tossed a no-hitter in Woodgrove’s rout of Fauquier to win a third straight Virginia 4A softball state trophy.
- Woodgrove’s girls’ lacrosse team also three-peated with an 18-6 victory against George Mason in the Virginia 4A state final.
- Maycol Nunez netted two goals to lead Washington-Lee to the Virginia 5A boys’ soccer crown over First Colonial — its first state title in any team sports since 1977.
- George Mason’s girls’ soccer team has now won a whopping nine straight state titles following a 6-1 victory in Saturday’s Virginia 2A championship.
- Chantilly capped an improbable run with its first Virginia 6A boys’ tennis title while Jefferson captured its fourth straight crown in 5A action.
Hopefully after soaking up all the state tournament action on Friday and Saturday, you picked up a paper on Sunday to see what local talent is bubbling up in our annual spring All-Met section! Click here for access to photos and video of the honorees across 14 spring sports.