Local basketball players continue to make inroads in California.
The latest quarter, Phillip Webb, Maynor Brooks, Christopher Collins and Larue Nixon, were recently featured in the California media for helping make the Santa Clarita Christian School Cardinals a winning team heading into 2013.
Nixon, a 5ft 10in senior guard, states their exploits should inspire more Caymanian players to advance their game abroad.
“They should really fully commit to doing it and work hard when they’re out here,” Nixon said. “They aren’t only representing themselves, but the Cayman Islands as a whole and Santa Clarita.”
All four young men transferred to the prep school’s varsity basketball programme within the last two years and have made quick inroads. Nixon had a significant role on the 2011-2012 side while Webb is remembered for a double-double performance earlier this season, his initial campaign.
The quartet are following the path laid out by Davion Cotterell, the first Caymanian to play at the school. Tikko Moore would also join the Cardinals in 2011 and both went on to play college basketball in the US. Cotterell stars for the University of Tampa while Moore, who experimented at tight-end on the Cardinals’ American football team, competes at Simpson University in Redding, California.
The push for Caymanian players on the West Coast is largely due to Cayman basketball’s technical director, Victor ‘Voot’ O’Garro, working alongside Cardinals head coach James Mosley, who went out about facilitating easier international student transfers in 2007.
Mosley states the structure is in place for more Caymanians to excel in California.
“It’s been a lot of fun,” Mosley said. “It’s something I didn’t at first envision. It kind of developed gradually and things have worked out well.”
The Cardinals are next in action against another California school in Trinity Classical Academy, out of Valencia, on Thursday, 17 January.