If the atmosphere during this summer’s Honesdale boys basketball camp is any type of indication, the future of Hornet hoops looks very bright indeed.
Last week, more than 60 players of all ages and abilities assembled daily at the Wayne Highlands Middle School gym to take part in the clinic, which was once again sponsored by the Wayne County Board of Commissioners.
“We’re very pleased with how well everything went and we’re happy to show our support for programs like this one,” Commissioner Brian Smith told TWI Sports. “It’s great to see all these kids here getting involved in something positive.”
Tim Wood, Honesdale’s boys varsity coach and the camp organizer, was quick to agree, saying: “Our goals for this camp are very simple. We want to teach the kids basketball skills. We want to teach them sportsmanship...and we really want them to have fun.”
Judging from all the big smiles (on the faces of players and parents alike) camp coaches succeeded.
On the final day of the clinic, family members were invited to come out and witness an awards ceremony at center court.
Coach Wood addressed a large crowd, taking time to acknowledge his clinicians for all their many hours of volunteer work.
Ron Rowe, Mike Lyle and Maria West prvided expert instruction all week to an attentive group of players ranging in age from grades two through nine.
“I really can’t thank them enough for all their hard work,” he said as the crowd roared its approval. “Without these folks, a camp like this couldn’t happen.”
Ray Ofner also took time out from his busy summer schedule to organize a final day camp feast...consisting of two perennial favorites: ice cream sandwiches and grilled hot dogs. But, before this mouth-watering repast, there was the small matter of handing out trophies.
Coach Wood explained that there were two awards for each age group:?one for free throw shooting and another for the “Most Improved Player.”
Drew Howell was the first camper honored for his foul shooting proficiency. This talented young cager converted nearly 60% of his attempts to lead the Junior Division.
“Drew was on pace to shoot 70% from the line, but he had a little hiccup on the last day,” Coach Wood said. “He still wound up at just under 60% and that’s a pretty good number for a young player.”
Next up was Will Howell, who took home the Middle School Division free throw trophy.
Drew’s older brother is something of a foul shooting prodigy. In fact, he’s captured four straight titles in the Honesdale Biddy Basketball contest. Howell drained a cool 80% of his tries during the week of camp.
“This isn’t the first free throw shooting trophy Will has won at this camp and I’m pretty sure it won’t be the last,”?Coach Wood said.
Mark Ambrose, an eagle-eyed 8th grader, walked off with the Senior Division free throw shooting title.
“Mark is a high-motor kid with really good size for his age and we’re looking for big things from him in the next couple of years,”?said Coach Wood.”
Joey Scarfalloto earned this year’s Most Improved Player among the Junior Division ranks.
“Joey came to camp early every day and worked very hard,”?said Coach Wood. “He showed a great deal of improvement.”
In the Middle School Division, Max Land was honored as the camp’s Most Improved Player.
“Max is a young man who has come a long way as a player and I’m proud of him,” said Coach Wood.
The final award of the week went to Nick Theo-bald, who was chosen as the Senior Division’s Most Improved Player.
“I’m very impressed with Nick because he was one of the youngest players in our Senior Division,” Coach Wood said. “Nick got better every day and we hope that learning curve keeps on arcing upward.”