Knights visit Pines, prep for JA

John Gray High School continues to make the right moves on and off the court. 

The school currently boasts one of the top youth basketball teams in the Cayman Islands. Many of those squad members are gearing up for exhibition games in Jamaica next week. In the lead up to those contests, the school organized a trip to the Pines Retirement Home. John Gray teacher and JGHS Basketball Club leader Huey Crawford said last Thursday’s visit was about giving the young men perspective. 

“As the JGHS Knights Basketball Club prepares for their upcoming Jamaica trip and big game next week, the young men were able to take some time off the court to spend with the seniors at the Pines,” Crawford said. “The young men took a tour of the facility, played dominoes with some of the guest and were able to meet some of the staff. This was a great opportunity for these young men to appreciate their youth and give back to the community as they were able to meet some of the patients. In particular, Jerry Harper – who was a former teacher at John Gray.”  

John Gray formed the club last year as a way to bolster basketball’s youth development. The initiatives works with other local efforts, such as the Kings after-school program, as many young players engage in multiple groups. The Pines visit is part of the club’s community outreach. Crawford said his squad is also linked with a government initiative catering to young people. 

“The Knights basketball club is an extension of the Extended After School Program, which fosters youth development, and is constantly striving to make an positive impact on Grand Cayman.” 

Up next for John Gray’s Under-19 squad are four games against Jamaican high schools on Oct. 27-31. The team roster features: Albis Amaya, Alex Brown, Jahmar Dawkins, James Ebanks, Roy Ebanks, Darren Kirchman, Ted Padua, Errol Simms, Rascine Smith, Bryce Thompson and Trevin Williamson. Crawford, who has been helped on the sidelines by Errol Grey, will lead the group – accompanied by Kirlew Watson and Hurlene Grey. 

Heading into this week, the Knights sit atop the 2014 Dominos Under-19 Basketball League, organized by the Cayman Islands Basketball Association. John Gray improved to 3-0 after a 75-16 victory over the 0-3 Game Takers last Tuesday. Williamson had a game-high 22 points and six rebounds, James Ebanks added 17 points and four steals. Joshua O’Garro was the top scorer for the losing side with eight points. 

League matches continue this week as the 0-2 Soldiers, based out of Wesleyan Christian Academy, battle the 1-1 JGHS Warriors on Tuesday. The association court off Eastern Avenue serves as the venue from 6:15 p.m. Soldiers, the reigning champs, are coming off a 76-54 thrashing at the hands of the 2-0 Bodden Town Wolves.  

Amaya led the cry for the Wolves, burning his old team with 16 points and 16 rebounds. Justin Collins added 16 points and seven steals, Michael Brooks contributed 15 points, Duncan Anderson notched 11 points and Jamel Winton chipped in 10 points and five rebounds. Daniel Britton carried the Soldiers with 17 points and 15 rebounds. 

Knights-Pines

The John Gray Knights visited with Pines patients like Jerry Harper, seated. – PHOTO: SUBMITTED

Albis-AMaya

Albis Amaya will be competing against Jamaican high school teams. – PHOTO: MATTHEW YATES