8th Ballin By Da Beach to introduce boys’ camp


Tribune Sports Reporter


THE eighth edition of Ballin By Da Beach will feature two camps at one venue as the event takes on a new initiative in 2017.

The camp, traditionally the premier camp for girls, will continue that tradition but will also simultaneously introduce a separate camp for boys at the Kendal Isaacs Gymnasium this week, June 26-30

“Initially, my goal was to reach all Bahamian basketball players, not just girls, but girls are generally overlooked and overshadowed. You go to any camp here and you will have a majority of males with one or two females. I’ve experienced it. We definitely wanted to focus on them just so they know that they matter. We just wanted to bring the girls in the spotlight to let them know that they stand out and they matter.

The programme was created by Jurelle Nairn in 2010 when she saw a need to place a greater focus on the development of women’s basketball at the youth level.

“We have a wealth of knowledge, and are intent on just teaching the fundamentals of the game in line with our mission of making basketball better in the Bahamas. With this knowledge, one special feature of our camp will be a coaches’ clinic so our local coaches can get detailed instruction on how they can teach the game as well. They will have a chance to brush up on their skills, just to make sure we are presenting the best product because the whole purpose os to teach and for everyone to get better,” Nairn said. “I really want to make Bahamian basketball better and we can do that through reaching out to people that want to teach and who want to give back.”

Familiar camp conductor, Charisse Mapp, will again host the girls’ segment for the eighth time. She is currently the head coach at Charlotte Latin High School (Charlotte, North Carolina) and Founder of Queen City Athletics.

“The vision that Jurelle shared, these kids have an opportunity to use this sport to advance their quality of life and I’m just happy I can assist them in being a part of that. It’s been humbling to watch them grow. The kids come with joy and some uncertainty, but after a few years, the repeat campers have started to ask and anticipate the camp because they know what to expect because they’re excited about the possibility to learn” Mapp said.

SJ Lennon, game operations coordinator for the Toronto Raptors and founder of BallUp Academy, alongside Tim Lewis of Montreat College, Assistant Coach (Ashville, North Carolina) and Crossover Athletics, will conduct the boys’ segment of the camp.

Lennon, who was born in Jamaica, said he always seeks an opportunity to assist the development of basketball in the Caribbean.

“I don’t really have any expectations for this week but we just want to work hard, being a young man that’s from the islands I just want an opportunity to further grow the game. Being around the game at the high school, college and professional level. I’ve been able to see the game at various aspects and I just want to bring that here to the islands,” he said.

“I want to bridge the gap between us and the rest of the world. I’ve taken a close look at talented Bahamians because you have great prospects right here. That is something that brought me here and will keep me coming back.”

Lewis said they look to provide a focus on the fundamentals.

“This week is going to be intense and I’m looking forward to teaching the young men here. More and more kids are leaning away from the fundamentals and that’s something I stress whenever I travel to teach the game all around the world.”

National team stalwart, JR Cadot, who recently completed his season with Ametx Zornotza in the Spanish Silver League, will also be one of the local coaches to assist at the camp.

“Growing up and reaching the level that I did, I know it’s important to get kids as early as possible,” he said. “The knowledge they need for things on and off the court, it’s a blessing for them to get training as early as possible. We’re going to push them, we want them to be better players.”

The camp will host players aged five to 18 with packages ranging from $50 to $125. The two camps will be held at the same time but will remain separate.

Since 2010, the camp has featured hundreds of underserved, aspiring student athletes.


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