The Nazzaro Center’s Small Fry Basketball League, one of the most popular programs the center runs, is about to get underway for its 39th season! A comprehensive basketball program for boys and girls as young as 4 up through high school, the league has three levels of play, all focusing on the teaching of the sport in a low level competitive atmosphere but with a high level of motivation, sportsmanship and fun. The beginning level, for children ages 3 or 4 to about 7, is 80% instructional and 10% competitive. Sessions are every Saturday morning at 10:30 and consist of 45 minutes of drills (passing, defense, rebounding, shooting etc.) and culminate in a 15 minute “game”, where participants are divided into two teams and play a very loose scrimmage. At this level, the baskets are only 8 feet high, there are no standings kept and the teams are fluid from week to week.
The next 2 levels, the Junior Varsity (grades 2/3 through 5) and the Varsity (grades 6-8) are a little more competitive but still emphasize participation and learning over final results. At each of these two levels, there are 4 fairly even teams that play a 3 game exhibition season, a 12 game regular season, an All*Star Game and at least one play-off game, possibly two. The JV plays Saturday afternoons (1 or 2 pm) while the Varsity plays their games on Thursday evenings (5:45 or 6:45 pm tap-offs). A fully organized game is played at each level, complete with coaches, referees, the 10 foot baskets and the main scoreboard. The season culminates in a “Final Four” at year’s end and an All*Star game on Harvard’s court at the Murr Center.
(For the high school level, there are various travel teams which won’t get underway until December).
For all divisions, the participants are given team shirts (which must be worn at all games) and are invited to the season ending banquet in April, where all children are given an attendance award, the size of which is directly proportional to their attendance.
Although the rosters have been made, they are not closed and there is still room for any child in any division. The cost of the league is only $25 for one player, $40 for two siblings or $50 for three or more. There is no cost for members of the Nazzaro Center’s youth program.
Although both of the upper divisions have played their initial exhibition games, there is still plenty of basketball left and anyone wishing to sign up may still do so ( the instructional league doesn’t begin until November 9). To do this, or to get more information, call the center at 617-635-5166 and ask for Carl.