Satisfaction for all agesPublished 6:44pm Saturday, June 29, 2013
Youngstarz camp serves parents and kids
For the ninth year, a large group of kids gathered last week, not to be babysat, but to learn fundamental skills from coach Ed Young at his Youngstarz Basketball Camp.
The successful Nansemond River High School coach hosted 66 kids at the school, yielding both happy campers who had learned a lot and approving parents ready to sign them up for more.
First-time Youngstarz camper, Christian DuBois, 11, said, “I learned how to get rebounds, play defense, get handles, pass the ball, look for people, make some cuts, learn how to get along with people — so I learned a lot of stuff here.”
The camp, which included boys and girls, both local and not, was split into two age groups: rising third- through fifth-graders and rising sixth- through eighth-graders. Nine-year-old Koron Hunter, a returning camper from 2012, won the Most Improved Player award for the younger division and listed the 5-on-5 games as his favorite activity.
Like DuBois, eleven-year-old Tray Pittman’s list of things he took away from the full-day camp was not limited to basketball.
“I learned how to be a better teammate, how to pass the ball, how to shoot the ball, I learned some new dribble moves and learned how to get along with everybody,” he said.
Pittman, a second-year camper who came from North Carolina to attend, was greeted by his grandparents on Thursday after awards were handed out. Pittman was named to the camp’s All-Academic team for having good grades during the course of the 2012-2013 school year.
“First of all, I’m proud of my grandson,” James Lawrence said of Pittman.
He strongly praised the camp, noting it “gives the kids something to do, it’s educational, it teaches them discipline, and it’s just great — it’s a wonderful program.”
Some parents were already preparing for next summer.
“I’ve had 10 sign-ups for next year already,” Young said. “We ran a quick $50 summer special.”
There were also parental requests for expansion beyond the four-day schedule.
“I’m thinking about adding a week,” Young said for 2014. “There’s a demand for it.”
In addition to instructors like Warriors assistant coach Paul Hall, Young brought in Teko Wynder, who previously played for the University of Tulsa and the Philadelphia 76ers. Another guest instructor was 2011 Nansemond River graduate Ashton Moore, now a rising junior guard at The Citadel, The Military College of South Carolina.
One of Young’s current players, rising senior Devon Oakley, said his first year working at the camp was fun.
“It really felt good to drop knowledge on people that you know looked up to you, came to your games and looked at you as like a role model,” he said.
Third-year instructor Kendric Washington said the education went both ways, as he learned from the camp how to teach, rather than just telling kids what to do.
“(They’re) all a bunch of fun,” he said of the kids. “They’re headaches, but you got to love them.”
2013 Youngstarz Basketball Camp Award Winners
Camper of the Week – Jack McGhee (Northern Shores Elementary School)
Outstanding Player of the Camp – Kendall Bynum (Joliff Middle School)
Top Female Camper – Asia Crocker (John Yeates Middle School)
The following awards had one winner for each age level (grades 3-5 and grades 6-8):
Top Scholar – Amaya Allen (Hillpoint Elementary), Joshua Hale (John Yeates)
Most Improved – Koron Hunter (Nansemond Parkway Elementary School), David Beamon (John Yeates)
Hustle Award – Ryan Alder (Northern Shores), Myles Bernard (Nansemond Parkway Elementary School)
Top Defender – Brian Flowers (Northern Shores), Jamal Boone (John Yeates)
Top Station Worker – Jacorion Artis (Nansemond Parkway), Derrick Daubon (John Yeates)
Top Rebounder – Tyler Jones (Driver Elementary School), Chris Allen (King’s Fork Middle School)
Top Playmaker – Charlie Chapman (Driver), Christian Moore (Driver)
Best Teammate – Dashawn Gibson (Hillpoint), Jack McGhee (Northern Shores)
1-On-1 Champ – Charlie Chapman (Driver), Vidal Wilkins Jr. (King’s Fork)
Hot Shot Champ – Joe Askew (Isle of Wight Academy), Christian Moore (Driver)
Top Foul Shooter – Dewayne Wiggins (Kilby Shores), Chris Allen (King’s Fork)
All-Academic Team – David Beamon (Forest Glen Middle School), Jordan Ponton (Northern Shores), Tracy Pittman (W.A. Pattillo School, N.C.), Jaden Freeman (John Yeates), C.J. Greene (John Yeates), Chris Dubois (John Yeates), Nehemiah Hill (John Yeates), Jason Breckner (John Yeates), Jack McGhee (Northern Shores) and Chris Chambliss (King’s Fork)
All-Camp Team – Samantha Arnt (John F. Kennedy Middle School), Will Richardson (Norfolk Christian), Jamal Boone (Driver), Jamir Barnes (Creekside Elementary School), Christian Moore (Driver), Charlie Chapman (Driver), Waren Wright (John Yeates), Koron Hunter (Nansemond Parkway), Joshua Hale (John Yeates) and Myles Bernard (Nansemond Parkway)