February 23, 2019

Saturday Basketball leagues to run through February


MIO –– Young athletes interested in trying basketball are invited to participate in the Saturday Basketball league at Mio AuSable school each weekend in February to hone their skills and get active during the cold weeks near the middle of winter.

“Saturday Basketball was a tradition during my previous 16-year stint in coaching,” coach Cindy Thomey said. “This is the third year it will be back in place. It is sponsored by Family Fare –– they supply money toward prizes, medals and trophies.”

Thomey said the league is a free skills and games session for third- through sixth-grade girls, and many of her varsity basketball players volunteer their time to mentor the young girls.

The games will take place Feb. 3, 10, 17 and 24 from 10-11:30 a.m. Those on the team will also get the opportunity to play games at halftime during the JV and varsity Lady Thunderbolts games held Feb. 8 and Feb. 15 at Mio AuSable.

“It is beneficial for both age groups,” she said. “I have been very proud of the varsity girls the last couple years and their devotion to the program. Many players volunteered for all of the Saturday Basketball sessions in years past, ran halftime games for these young girls and visited their classrooms to encourage their participation.”

Thomey said the friendly environment is great to build the love of the game in young girls and they can look up to the current players as role models.

“This service helps build the skills and participation for future Lady Bolts,” she said. “We all enjoy the young girls’ enthusiasm and they bring smiles to our faces. This is oriented toward girls at Mio school but I would never say no to a girl that wanted to play basketball, so students from other schools have attended in the past and are welcome.”

There will also be a Little Spark program going on for the first time for girls and boys in kindergarten, first and second grades.

“There is a cost because the varsity girls are using it as a fundraiser toward new uniforms,” Thomey said. “We have been saving for two years and are still short on funds. Our goal is to purchase uniforms for next year.”

The cost for the Little Spark program is $5 per session or $15 for all four sessions, where the students will be participating in skills stations and games that will take place Feb. 3, 10, 17 and 24 from 11:30-12:30 p.m.

According to livestrong.com, learning organized sports at a young age is beneficial for social and physical development and introduces structure and direction to children's physical activity.

Those interested in joining are asked to please bring gym shoes to participate. Entry forms may be picked up in the elementary office and may be dropped off there or brought to the first day of basketball.


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