Summer Moves

Beacon Hoops opens 24th season

By Skip Pearlman

The sounds of basketball — dribbling, squeaking sneakers and court chatter — filled the air at the South Avenue court last week as Beacon Hoops began its 24th season providing instruction and competition.

The summer program hosts games at this and other city courts for four divisions: Pee Wee (ages 6-7), Intermediate (8-9), Rookie (10-12) and Junior (13-16). Before the season, players are evaluated during tryouts and assigned to teams in an effort to keep the games competitive.

The instructors include former players and coaches, along with parents. Each team plays a nine or 10-game schedule, plus a tournament.

Truck Williamson, a 1983 Beacon High School grad who runs the program, which was founded in 1996 by his classmates Wayne Griffin and Leaman Anderson, noted the league attracts many players from outside Beacon. “For many years we had a waiting list — but it’s still good, people are still coming,” he said.

Williamson says the city doesn’t offer much else for children and teens by way of competitive sports in the summer, except baseball, and that with many sports the cost of equipment can be prohibitive. “Here it’s 50 bucks [for registration], and everyone is guaranteed to play,” he said.