St. Kitts – Nevis Basketball Camp Helps Promising Athletes

St. Kitts - Nevis Basketball Camp Participants

St. Kitts – Nevis Basketball Camp Participants
Photo By Erasmus Williams

Basseterre, St. Kitts – Nevis
August 14, 2009 (SKNIS)

The Department of Sports is confident that it can facilitate further scholarship opportunities for locals who took part in the 4th Annual Reach One, Teach One Basketball Camp.

The event concluded on Friday, August 14, completing five days of training for children ages 7 to 16 years. The young players spent mornings learning fundamentals from Grassroots Basketball Advisor, John Spezia and other coaches. Evenings were dedicated for the more experienced players. It’s during these sessions that Coach Spezia, the President of the National Junior College Athletic Association, and others kept a watchful eye for persons with the talent to succeed on the collegiate circuit.

Director of Sports Dave Connor told SKNIS that the coaches have identified a number of prospective players that they are interested in and procedural assessments are being carried out to determine their readiness.

To date, five locals have earned scholarships through the camp organized by the Government Department in partnership with the Bird Rock Sports Club. Dane Rawlins was recruited to Missouri Baptist University, while Nashorn Maynard headed off to the University of Alaska, Fairbanks. Shamile Jeffers and Shantel Walwyn now attend Williston State College and Erasmus Williams Jr. graduated from Smith-Cotton High School, this summer.

Those players home on vacation have been sure to give back. Williams and Jeffers worked as coaches in the morning sessions.

“Participants can identify with them,” Mr. Connor explained, in highlighting the close bonds shared by the camp attendees over the years. “They have been exposed to what is taking place [internationally] so they can come back and be a living testimony to the other players about what it takes to [succeed] and they can [demonstrate] what they’ve learnt.”

Coach Spezia and former WNBA player Dee Davis expressed pleasure at being back in St. Kitts where they can continue to contribute to the improvement of local basketball. Spezia noted that there has been a slight slide in some skills since they were last on island but much of the basic fundamentals are still present.

The Department of Sports is working to promote greater consistency in this regard and will host a coach’s clinic for local personnel on Saturday. The one-day event will be held at Warner Park and consists of theoretical and practical lessons.

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