Youth Basketball Going Strong

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A town-sponsored seventh- and eighth-grade recreation basketball program that once was floundering for lack of interest is now hitting on all cylinders.

"It's going very smoothly and the players are having fun," town recreational specialist Charlene Hunt said.

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Since the onset of the seventh- and eighth-grade recreation hoop season Nov. 15, teams have been playing games weekdays and Saturdays in old PHS gymnasium. Five teams are entered in the coed league.

"We have five teams entered and will be playing games until Dec. 6."

Hunt said she opted to wrap up the league on that date so the players can try out for the Rim Country Middle School teams when they begin play Dec. 13.

Since the onset of the recreation hoop season Nov. 15, teams have been playing games weekdays when old PHS gymnasium is not in use by high school teams and on Saturdays.

"I sat down with (athletic director) Dave Bradley and worked out a schedule that has gone very well," Hunt said.

About the only shortcoming the recreation specialist has had to deal with is the lack of the 24 girls needed to form a separate girls-only league.

"We had only 11 girls (register) so we made the league coed," Hunt said.

Being coed, however, hasn't diminished the level of play.

"The girls have improved so much since last year and since the season began," Hunt said. "They should be ready for middle school (basketball)."

Some of the reasons for the stepped-up level of play might be a new substitution rule that allows fledgling players ample time on the floor to improve their skills.

"We have a four-minute in, four-minute out rule in which coaches have to put in new players after four minutes," Hunt said.

For more information on any parks and recreation youth sports offering, call Hunt at (928) 474-5242, ext. 7.

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