Titles decided

Josh Gerran takes a jumper during the 14 and under match at the ElmCor Summer Basketball League.
Photo by Lem Peterkin

Seven titles were determined last week when the ElmCor Summer Basketball League concluded another very successful season. Childs Place sponsored all the action during the summer.

“That’s my Day Care Center,” said Greg Coles, director of the summer league. “We serviced children for 30 years and this year had 62 teams in various age categories.

These games were contested at the Louis Armstrong Recreation Center of the ElmCor Youth and Adult Center, the indoor site of league action when inclement weather forced the shift of games from the PS 127 outdoor location in East Elmhurst.

Most of the playoff contests showcased the stars of tomorrow and were very exciting and thrilled the fans. Spectators, especially those whose children competed, came out to cheer their kids through 14 and under contests and supported them.

Recruiters were on hand to see the action during their ‘open period.’ during the regular season of summer action. This (during the playoff time) is a down time for the recruiters as most of the seniors have already made up their mind about college.

“Competition was very good (in the playoffs and during the season),” Coles added on the final day of the season. “We started (Championship Saturday) at 8:00 a.m. and went until the evening (with continuous action). It started with eight-year-olds and went to 18 years and the Unlimited Division. And the kids (players) were happy with their trophies.”

Two Philadelphia-New York Legend games of former players who starred during their previous days competed in the 50s and 40s at the Elm Cor Center on Championship Saturday. This Classic was held for the first time at ElmCor. For four years it was held at the Brownsville Recreation Center in Brooklyn. Next year it will be in Philadelphia.

Highlighting the day’s action was the Ball Hoggs’ 70-54 victory over the Rennissons Warriors for the high school division title.

Cameron Winston, a name to keep in mind as a future standout player, of the Ball Hoggs certainly has the ability to further his hoop career to the next level.

“I went to a junior boarding school Rectory in Connecticut but this year I’m going to Dwight as a sophomore,” he said. “I’ll be playing as a ‘2’ guard. I played hard in Connecticut. I’m an all-around player and do what the coach wants me to do-pass, rebound or score….

“This (ElmCor League) helped me to move to the next level. I’m 16 years old and played in a league 19 and under.”

He received two trophies after the playoff title game, for being a member of the winning team as all my teammates did, and as the playoff most valuable player.

Cameron’s father Cameron Sr. was a former football player at August Martin in Jamaica, Queens, and then transferred to play basketball only at Brooklyn’s Bishop Loughlin for two years.

In the initial contest of the day’s festivities, one for the beginner first learning the fundamentals of the sport, the East Elmhurst Ball Hoggs defeated YBE of South Jamaica, 11-3, for the eight and under title. The second contest saw Long Island Lightening turn back North Babylon, 24-4, for the 10 and under title.

In the third contest, Aaron Davis netted 16 points to enable the Gauchos of the Bronx and Manhattan, to defeat M5 ElmCor, 47-36, for the 12 and under title, followed by the Ball Hoggs 46-38 win over Team NYC for the 14 and under title. In the 16 and under title game, the Renissance pulled out a 45-42 thriller over Team Underrated from Long Island, behind Claudio Nmezi’s 24 points, including the last two for insurance markers. With almost 10 seconds left, the winners had to hold on after being ahead by seven points to make the score 43-42 with 34 seconds left. Execution, defense, taking care of the ball and making smart plays were the keys to the win.

Meanwhile, Will Bucket scored game high of 18 points, three more than teammates Seth Marshall and four more than Lamont Jones to pace New York to a 81-53 victory over Philadelphia on Saturday, in the 40 and over Legends game. This encounter also featured former college and high school great Charlie Jones come off the bench in the first quarter. He turned in an illustrious school and college career, before going overseas.

And in the 50-year-old Legends category, New York, featuring Gerald Thomas, who scored 18 points, and Bruce Morgan’s (13) defeated Philadelphia, 82-75. The losers were topped by 17 points each by Keith Coleman and Bruce Henderson.

During the week Patterson of New Jersey seemed to want ‘it’ more and ran away to defeat LPG of Queensbridge, 84-57.

Some of the teams captured their second ElmCor Summer League titles while other squads bounced back from last year.

“We had the same group as we had last year that went to the semi-finals,” said Lightening Coaches Wayne Huyghue and Darnell Huyghue, adding, “We bounced back, played defense hard and showed defense.”

Overall, league competition proved to be a tremendous success.

Now the student athletes are taking it easy before moving on to their academics.

Greg Coles, director of ElmCor Summer Basketball League.
Photo by Lem Peterkin

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