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Englewood’s Salvation Army hosted President’s Day basketball tournament

Photo caption: ENGLEWOOD YOUTH PARTICIPATE in a 5-On-5 tournament on President’s day. (Photo by Marcus Robinson)

The Salvation Army’s Adele organization, in collaboration with the Robert Stern Red Shield Center, hosted a 5-on-5 Basketball Tournament on Monday, February 20, giving CPS students an alternative to spending their time on the streets while schools were closed for President’s Day across the city.

Anticipating the Monday closure of Chicago Public Schools, Red Shield Center’s Captain AJ Zimmerman noted, via a statement, that the Englewood community is historically one of Chicago’s more troubled areas.

Zimmerman commented that with hundreds of shootings every year, the basketball tournament offered many young people a safe place to be while school was out for the holiday.

“We want to make sure the young people in our community have something constructive to do during this time off and are not engaging in any risky behaviors that would have negative and long-lasting effects on their lives,” Zimmerman said.

“Most of our young people love basketball, and this is an easy draw, to get them to come out and enjoy a basketball tournament.”

Zimmerman explained further, saying the 5-on-5 tournament consisted of 6-8 teams with up to eight players on each team. Middle school and high school teams were both separated to balance the playing field. A generous benefactor put up $500 for prize money, with each winning team winning $250 dollars.

Coach Lamar Bruce, who has been coaching basketball at the Red Shield Center for the past several years, could tell the young athletes—some of his players and sons among them—were having a grand time. “This is a great thing,” he said. “It’s extremely exciting to have them here.”

During the tournament, the youths enjoyed every minute on the court. Student athletes were excited to be interviewed by FOX 32 News and other media outlets throughout the event.

Sports Editor at Chicago Crusader Newspaper | + posts

Joseph Phillips is the Sports Editor for the Chicago Crusader Newspaper. He is a Chicago native, who has been a sports writer for over 17 years. He also hosts the SC Media News and Sports Network Q&A radio show on WHPK 88.5 FM Chicago.

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