The Yosemite Youth Basketball Association’s varsity team placed third in the 15th Annual AAU Spring Fling Girls Basketball tournament held April 2 and 3 at Yosemite High School and Oak Creek Intermediate School.
The tournament drew 32 club teams in five divisions (sixth grade through high school) from as far north as Oakland and as far south as Ventura, and is sponsored by the Yosemite Youth Basketball Association (YYBA).
The Oakhurst YYBA varsity team, coached by YHS senior Ashley Harrell, placed third in its division, after beating Cencal Swoosh of Clovis 37-31.
The high scorer for Yosemite in that game was Grace Fries, with 18 points, and Jenna Cruz added eight points.
Fries was named the team’s MVP by coach Harrell. Last year Fries was the eighth grade team’s MVP at the tournament.
The Wolfpack of Clovis beat K Town of Kerman 30-24 to win the high school title.
The Yosemite seventh grade team, coached by James Andersen, played Cal Sting of Hanford for third place in that division, with Cal Sting winning 26-18 after trailing at half 16-12.
High scorer for Yosemite was Genna Kurz with nine points.
Tournament co-directors were Rick Slayton, president of the YYBA and Jeff Nichols.
John “JT” Thompson oversees a crew of nine referees from Southern California who have worked the tournament since it’s inception.
“It’s hard to believe this was the 15th annual tournament,” Slayton said. “It’s been such a pleasure to watch our young athletes compete over the years and grow into such great adults.”
The tournament brought an estimated 1,000 basketball players, coaches, and relatives to Oakhurst for the weekend.
“This tournament is not only a great event for our students and athletes, but the tournament provides a good economic shot in the arm for many of our area businesses including hotels, restaurants, gift shops, and gas stations,” Slayton said.
The tournament raises funds for the Yosemite Youth Basketball Association for uniforms, supplies, and entries to tournaments.
YBBA has raised more than $400,000 over the past 15 years from the tournament, car washes, fireworks sales in the Madera Ranchos, raffles, bake and rummage sales, and selling food and beverages at Oakland Raiders games. The organization has awarded more than $25,000 in scholarships to Yosemite High graduating seniors.
Details: visit goyyba.com for details or to donate to the program. Jeff Nichols, (559) 760-0931.