Richmond’s own MacHoops will be returning to Bballnationals in 2019 after making their debut at the event last year with their U15 and U17 boys teams.
Last year’s tournament served as live training for their regular season at MacNeill Secondary school.
“The tournament last year helped us prepare for our basketball season,” explains Steward Siy, program director and coach for MacHoops.
"Weaknesses and areas of improvements are quickly exposed in a competitive tourney like this and fortunately for us we were able to strengthen some of those weaknesses throughout the course of the [basketball] season.”
The MacHoops club began in Spring 2010 to allow students at MacNeill Secondary to continue to pursue their athletic passion during spring and summer. Their team name was simply derived from adding “Hoops” to the first half of MacNeill.“Some creative minds among us,” jokes Siy.
The team took their experience from last year’s tourney and used it to bring both their junior and senior boys teams to the Provincials. The MacNeill senior boys team finished in fourth in the AAA Provincials, and the club is looking to use this year’s event as another opportunity to grow.
“We are hoping to use this year's tourney to help us get ready for our season next year,” Siy affirms.
The team relies entirely on volunteer coaches, including school alumnus, to run the program. The recent addition of their U 15 girls team is thanks to the coaching efforts of Denise DeJesus, Justin Dy-Pe, both graduates of MacNeill Secondary, as well as MacHoops.
The current administration at MacHoops consists primarily of the same people who founded the club almost ten years ago and their dedication to the program is as strong as ever.
There are still openings available for Bballnationals 2019. Head over to the website and register now to get in on the action!
Written by: Jake Cressy