Around 10 a.m. Saturday morning, the doors to the Milford Bulldogs’ gym were opened to the community for the “Mt. Moriah Christian Youth Basketball Tournament.” Teams were invited from all over to come and compete against one another to raise money for the church.
Teams from Italy, Milford, Hillsboro, and even Waco showed up supporting their own independently created teams. The games were separated into 2 halves, each eight minutes a piece. With only an entry fee of $3 and the thought of the money going to the Mt. Moriah Christian Church, I ask you; Why not?
Three teams represented Italy in the youth tournament; a high school and junior high team of girls, a high school and junior high team of boys and a team that went undefeated in the I.Y.A.A. for two years, Mrs. Elizabeth Evans’ team of 4th grade girls. Shedrick Walker, a devoted local who goes by “Munchy”, was the another Italy coach for both the high school coed and junior high coed teams.
The first team of the day to play was the Italy’s boys team. The Italy boys took on Milford’s first High school and Junior High team. Italy finished with a score of 27 but was overcame by Milford’s 43 points.
The team of mainly junior high boys was accompanied by two players far younger than the others. Both, Cameron Carter (fourth grade) and Kevin Copeland (fifth grade) played alongside the junior high students without any trouble. “Kevin and Cameron just as good as the junior high players. If they pursue basketball they could do anything,” said the 4th grade girls’ coach, Elizabeth Evans.
The Italy Boys played again against another junior high and high school team. Given the opportunity, the boys ran with it beating Milford’s second team 52 to 25.
Italy’s 4th grade team, coached by Mrs. Elizabeth Evans played next versus a Hillsboro team. Though a few of the players from Mrs. Evans’ team were additions from Hillsboro including; Breanna Anthony, Shatavia Rankin and Janae Davis. The two-time undefeated team from the I.Y.A.A. proved that they rule the court by beating their opposing team 16 to 4.
The junior high and high school girls from Italy played a Hillsboro team also but were not as lucky as the other girls team. They played hard, to their best ability, and for the love of the game. The final score: Italy 10, Hillsboro 26.
Italy 3rd & 4th Grade Girls
Janae Robertson, Jasmine Hernandez, Lyric Brooks, Quintera Washington, Breanna Anthony, Shatavia Rankin, Janae Davis, Kyndal Stephens
Italy Junior High & High School Boys
Tyvion Copeland, Treyvon Robertson. Kevin Copeland, Deiondre Cochran, Cole Hopkins, Eric Carson, Darol Mayberry, Cameron Carter
Italy Junior High & High School Girls
Khadijiah Davis, Paola Mata, Chante Birdsong, Brianna Perry, Mariesela Perez, Jameka Copeland