Boys & Girls Club teams up with FGCU hoops players and coaches

Reporter: Zach Oliveri Writer: Paul Dolan
Published: Updated:

Some up-and-coming hoops stars from the Boys & Girls Club are getting the chance to learn from some Division 1 players.

Thursday, Florida Gulf Coast University’s basketball program held a camp for kids and teenagers from the Boys & Girls Club.

One hundred Boys & Girls Club kids were excited to enter Alico Arena Thursday morning. FGCU men’s and women’s basketball players joined them on the court. The players took them through several drills.

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Basketball drills at Alico Arena. CREDIT: WINK News

Kilani McMillon easily summarized her first time at the clinic.

“It’s fun, cool. I like all the people here, so it’s cool,” said McMillon.

McMillon’s favorite drill was shooting.

Although shooting and scoring are a favorite of many, other kids enjoyed different aspects of the game.

For Xzayvier Gilbert and Antoine Harley, it’s passing.

FGCU basketball coaches Pat Chambers and Karl Smesko view the clinic as a chance to have fun and go beyond the game.

“These young kids can see them and go, ‘That could be me someday.’ So the thing that’s important to me is hope. We’re giving them hope to say, hey, look at this. This could be you,” said Chambers.

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Kids at the basketball clinic. CREDIT: WINK News

“To get them here on campus and see them have such fun and enjoying the game we love to teach and be a part of, the enthusiasm has been great,” said Smesko. “The teamwork has been wonderful. It’s great to see everyone in the gym having a good time.”

Sportsmanship was one of the many lessons McMillon left the court with.

“It’s like when you have a team, like it’s so cool to have a team cheering you on and all that stuff,” said McMillon.

Those who participated in Thursday’s clinic were enrolled in the summer enrichment program at the Varsity Lakes Middle School club. Coach Chambers hopes the kids takeaway the importance of hard work and a great attitude.

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