Hoopfest to honor local coach, help kids

Published 12:00 am Friday, August 3, 2007

Staff Report

The City of Selma’s PALS Center is holding its second annual Maxeyball Hoopfest 3-on-3 Basketball Tournament Saturday, Aug. 11 at Memorial Stadium.

“I am delighted that the city’s PALS Center is able to host this event in its second year.

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Last year, the event was successful and I am confident that this year’s event will be even bigger and better,” stated Mayor James Perkins.

The PALS Center is a non-profit organization with a mission to provide positive interactions between police officers and youth.

“Selma PAL is a youth crime prevention program that utilizes sports and education to cement the bond between police officers and youth,” said Officer Dorothy Cowan, PALS director. “Studies have shown that if a young person respects a police officer on the ball field, gym or classroom, the youth will likely come to respect the laws that police officers enforce.”

Honoring Coach Willie Maxey Jr., Selma High School vice principal and basketball coach, the tournament is designed like pick-up games played in the backyard, school playground or recreation center.

Mayor Perkins expressed a special thanks to Coach Maxey for allowing his name to be used in an effort to recognize him and his leadership in basketball within Selma schools and community.

“I consider this as a privilege for the Maxeyball Hoopfest Tournament to be named in my honor. I would like to thank God, Mayor James Perkins Jr. for selecting me, and Selma PAL Center Director, Dorothy Cowan, and her committee members for making this event possible,” Maxey said. “Not only will this event motivate the youth, but it will encourage them to take advantage of the opportunities that are foreseen for their future. Hopefully, I will continue to motivate and positively impact the youth of our community.”

This is an event for the serious ball player, as well as those who enjoy leisure play. The tournament features double-elimination and a round robin format. Each team will have four players:

three starters and one substitute. All teams will play other teams of similar age and abilities. Participants must be at least 7-years-old.

A slam dunk contest and 3-point shoot out will also take place.

Through sponsorships, local businesses, groups and organizations are able to help fund the event and support the PALS Center and its mission. There are also opportunities for businesses, churches and social clubs to sponsor teams.

A pre-registration party and charity fundraiser (Back 2 School B-Ball Blow Out) will kick off the events on Friday, Aug. 10 at Memorial Stadium at 7 p.m.

Sponsored by the Freedom Foundation, the featured 3-Point basketball shoot out

will give charity organizations an opportunity to win a $1,000 donation.

There will be a special appearance by Sammy Stephens of Flea Market, Montgomery, who will emcee the event with Real Talk radio host Gwen Brown.

Each participating organization will designate and/or recruit a representative to shoot for their charity.

There will be a $2 admission fee. There will be other prizes and live entertainment during the pre-registration event.