Annual CASA hoops classic next week

Warmer temperatures, sun-filled skies and the annual CASA Senior Basketball Classic – all signs that spring is on the way.

While the first two of those may seem like a pipe dream at this point, the annual CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocate) Senior Basketball Classic will go on as scheduled, beginning at 6 p.m. Thursday at Warren Area High School.

In its eighth season, the annual basketball classic is not about winning. Instead, it’s a game that promotes good sportsmanship and Warren and Forest county seniors a chance to showcase their skills one last time in an exhibition atmosphere.

Like the four showings prior, the 2013 Classic will feature a doubleheader which includes a girls game at 6 p.m. and a boys game at 7:30 p.m.

The night will feature graduating senior players from Sheffield, Tidioute, Warren, Youngsville, West Forest, Eisenhower and East Forest.

The girls game will be played between the Volunteers and Attorneys. The Volunteers will be led by Sheffield girls basketball coach Jeff Labesky while the Attorneys will be guided by Youngsville girls basketball coach David Becker.

Labesky’s team will feature seniors from Sheffield, Tidioute and Warren while Becker’s team features athletes Youngsville, Eisenhower, East Forest and West Forest.

Labesky’s team features Sheffield’s Ashley Davidson, Abby Labesky and Hannah Vile, Tidioute’s Aubrey Sonney and Warren’s Jaimie Eaton and Taylor Mineweaser. Becker’s club has Youngsville’s Katelyn Maille, West Forest’s Richele Botzer, Eisenhower’s Chelsea Parmenter, Alyssa Peterson and Halie VanOrd and East Forest’s Katie Motter.

The boys teams – the Judges and the Advocates – will be led by Eisenhower’s Dave Allenson and Warren’s Jeff Berdine respectively. Allenson’s team will find itself in unnatural territory on Thursday as members of the Eisenhower Knights and Youngsville Eagles – the county’s biggest rivalry – make up the Judges roster. The Advocates roster has seniors from Warren and Sheffield.

The Judges’ roster includes Aaron Lundmark, Colin Shine and Ryan Williams of Eisenhower and Coll Dininny, A.J. Gustafson, Broc Horn, Austin Norman, Tom Chapman, Corey Jones and Dan McLaughlin of Youngsville. Warren’s Jack Daley, Mark Davis, Andrew Hammersley, Austin Jerman and Matt Sandberg as well as Sheffield’s Tyler Fitzgerald, Dylan McNeal, Dylan Reynolds, Brendan Winslow and Shequan Wright make up the Advocates’ roster.

All rosters are tentative and are subject to last minute additions or subtractions.

The night will also feature between game performances by the YMCA gymnastics team and Dance Express Elite Company. The Honorable Judge Maureen Skerda will perform the tip-off for the girls game while The Honorable Judge Gregg Hammond will toss the tip for the boys game.