AAU squad needs new member

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, December 16, 2003

Suffolk News-Herald

What makes a successful youth basketball team? Let’s ask some of the Suffolk AAU 13U Blazer group.

&uot;We always play as a team and trust each other,&uot; says Jamar Wertz, 12. &uot;We have to, because we practice so much.&uot;


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&uot;We share the ball really well and we take good shots,&uot; says Jaquan Parker, 13. &uot;This is a good team for anybody who can pass, shoot, and share the ball.&uot;

&uot;We respect the team’s program,&uot; says Mike Mason, 12, who first found out about the team two years ago while reading the Suffolk News-Herald. &uot;I see some national championships in this team. We have a lot of potential.&uot;

That was proven around the time of Thanksgiving, when the local squad took part in the 14U Valley Shootout in Harrisonburg. Playing against older teams, they still managed to finish 2-1, good enough for second place.

&uot;They were taller than us, and they probably had a bit more skill,&uot; Wertz said of the team’s opponents.

On Jan. 31, the team gets another shot to show the lower East Coast its stuff; the Blazers will head down to Jacksonville, N.C. for the Carolina Shootout. Now here’s the best news for any apprentice cagers throughout the city – they’re one player short of a full roster!

&uot;We need someone’s who’s big, and already ready to play hard,&uot; says coach and Suffolk AAU director Chris Joyner. &uot;They have to have skills.&uot; The final player also can’t turn 14 before Sept. 1, 2004. For more information, head to a Blazers practice at 6:30 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays at Oakland Recreation Center.