Last January, with generous support from Backyard Sports Cares (BYSC) partner, Advocate Brokerage of Scarsdale, BYSC kicked off the organization’s first basketball league in White Plains. Approximately 100 fourth and fifth-graders from five local elementary schools participated in the league, which culminated in a jamboree finale on March 23rd, 2018 at SUNY Purchase.
Participating schools included Post Road School, Mamaroneck Avenue School, Ridgeway School, Church Street School and George Washington School. Each school was represented by a boys and girls team with ten students each. The program is designed to fill a gap in sports and recreation at these schools, so kids who don’t have access to competitive afterschool athletics can participate and reap the lifelong benefits associated with sports play.
Beginning in mid-January, students attended a weekday practice and competed against each other in weekly Saturday games through March 23rd.
“Based on the success of our Soccer League, we wanted to expand the scope of league play options for White Plains youth,” said Danny Bernstein, executive director, Backyard Sports Cares. “When we presented the idea to launch a basketball program with our soccer program education partners, the response was a resounding, YES! The new basketball league accomplished exactly what we had hoped. We have made competitive team sports available to youngsters who did not have access to this type of activity and we are teaching them valuable lessons about teamwork, lifelong fitness, and fun.”
“Our students participated with BYSC as part of the White Plains elementary basketball league and each week players had the opportunity to show off their skills,” said Suzanne Lasser, vice principal, Post Road Elementary. “For the culminating jamboree at SUNY Purchase, students from all five elementary schools were blended together into new team configurations and worked together to pass, block and shoot. It was wonderful to see the students from all five schools partner up and put the skills they have learned and practiced into action. Watching the students come together in this way foreshadows what school will be like for them when they transition to 6th grade where students from all five schools, for the first time, come together to learn and grow both in and out of the classroom setting. We look forward to next year and our second season of basketball!” added Lasser.
Special thanks to our league sponsor, Advocate Brokerage, for making this program possible.