Vernon’s “big” three will take their talents to the inaugural U13 3-on-3 basketball tournament at the B.C. Summer Games, in Nanaimo, July 17-20.
Rob Neid has coached basketball for 23 years and will head up the Zone 2 team.
“We’re really looking forward to it. It’s going to be a memory for these guys to look back on one day,” said Neid.
Each zone sends two teams comprised of five players. Games will be played indoors, on a half-court surface with a 15 second shot clock.
Isaiah Ondrik hasn’t played in a 3-on-3 tournament, but is looking forward to a new game against different players.
“It’s going to be fun. There’s going to be a lot of room and a lot more passing plays out there,” said Ondrik.
Ondrik is the youngest of four siblings and loves the Oklahoma City Thunder’s Kevin Durant.
“(Russell) Westbrook is cool, but I love Durant. I was a little disappointed that they didn’t win it this year,” said Ondrik.
The Grade 7 Hillview point guard loves to score and loves to help other people score.
“Isaiah and Zack (Smith) are great shooters and playmakers. That is exactly what we are looking for in 3-on-3,” said Neid.
Zack Smith simply loves basketball.
“I love playing, I love scoring, I love passing. I just like playing basketball,” said Smith.
Smith’s favorite player is LeBron James.
“Whatever team LeBron is on is my favourite. It doesn’t matter if it’s the Heat, the Cavaliers or whoever,” said Smith, who will cheer for the Cavaliers after James announced Friday that he was returning to Cleveland.
Smith attended Dave Love’s The Love of the Game shooting clinic at VSS in June, and believes he is a better scorer because of it.
Alan Bargaso, 12, is the third Vernon hoopster travelling to the Island and one of the oldest on the team, as he enters Grade 8 at Fulton in the fall.
“There is going to be more passing, more cuts and a lot more individual play than 5-on-5,” said Bargaso.
NBA free agency has been a hot topic all summer and Bargaso has a few thoughts for his favourite team.
The long-time New York Knicks fan said, “I’m confident they will sign Melo (Carmelo Anthony), and they should look at bringing in Pau Gasol.”
Bargaso stands 5-foot-4 and despite his love for putting the ball on the ground and taking it to the rack, his favourite move is the pull-up jumper.