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John Habib's City Sports: High school hoops preseason jamboree finally a reality
Spearheaded by former Alvirne High of Hudson coach Kevin Bonney, the first annual 16-team Coaches for a Cause Pre-Season Basketball Jamboree will take place at Alvirne Dec. 6 and 7.
The jamboree continues the next day at noon when Alvirne and Newport collide, followed by Spaulding of Rochester and Lebanon at 1:30 p.m., and Bedford and Portsmouth at 3.
“This is outstanding on many fronts,” said Wheeler. “It brings attention to our sport and rewards all the players who have worked hard during the offseason. I mean, this is a win-win situation for everyone involved and gives everyone a chance to see 16 teams before the start of the regular season.”
“Kevin Bonney deserves a great deal of credit for making this happen,” said Keefe. “We sat around a table one night and talked about how neat it would be to schedule games between teams from different divisions. We also wanted to give something back to the community.”
The Trinity-Pembroke match-up will feature many outstanding players. Carmen Giampetruzzi, Ryan Otis and Wenyen Gabriel will lead the Pioneers against standout senior Patrick Welch, who has a chance of eclipsing the 2,000-career-point mark this season.
“I’ve seen the two Conant kids play, and they’re very good players,” said Wheeler, adding that he’ll probably fill up two notebooks scouting the seven other Division I schools in the jamboree.
“We can try different combinations, mix and match players,” said Keefe. “It gives us a chance to develop some chemistry.”
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TRINITY’S chapter of the National Honor Society is hosting the first Pioneer Dash 5K road race to benefit New Horizons, the New Hampshire Food Bank, St. Anthony’s Food Pantry, the Salvation Army and the Wounded Warrior Project.
“City Sports” is published Saturdays in the New Hampshire Union Leader. Email staff reporter John Habib at email@example.com.