In 2015, the All Star Girls Report Summer League burst on the scene with an elite list of travel teams from across the country. This year, the ASGR Summer League has grown and developed into an even more impressive operation.
League membership jumped from 112 to over 160 teams this year, and the schedule was also tweaked. League games are now being played so that each team’s 11 League games are played during the live recruiting period.
“I like the way it is developing,” said Kenny Kalina, the director of the FGB program out of Florida. “Every game seems to be a good game. There are just a few strong teams, you have quality up and down the league.”
“The League is great because you get a chance to play against all those teams you hear about, and the college coaches are watching all those games. Plus, they have taken some great steps this year. I really like what they are doing to improve things,” added Roger Wiley of the South Carolina 76ers.
The scheduling change has brought critical exposure for these talented young athletes. The main draw for the League, however, will always be the supreme talent that is pulled from across the USA.
“We just love the Summer League,” said Spencer Richardson of Team Brandan Wright from Memphis. “The competition is tremendous, with so many great teams coming from all over the country. It’s been a great experience for our kids, and they get an opportunity to compete against great competition in front of college coaches.”
“It’s a great opportunity for us to play against outstanding teams from across the country,” added Matt Thalley from So Cal Select. “We’re out on the West Coast, and our kids really enjoyed competing and testing themselves against the best players from the South or the East Coast.”
“We just love it. You get to play against different teams from different areas, and you get major exposure with the college coaches,” said Walter Welsh from iExcel out of New York. “The biggest difference about playing in the League, though, is that you are playing for a championship. That’s huge for the players.”
As we know, if you have the talented players, the college coaches will follow.
“When you go to these events, it’s just wall-to-wall coaches,” noted Chris Johnson from Cy Fair Premier out of Texas.
The new events are bringing these top flight competitions to untraditional areas, such as the Northeast.
“The best thing is that it’s a great opportunity for the players to play in front of all the college coaches when they are playing against top tier teams,” noted Mass Huskies’ coach Hank Desantis. “The level of competition was awesome, and it was great to get those teams up in the Northeast. We have great talent, and all the college coaches, which is everything you need.”
Wherever the event is held, it will be orchestrated by the elite ASGR staff.
“The All Star Girls Report people are a real class act. They are great with everything, and that’s the main reason we keep going to their events,” said Kenneth Parham of the Riverside Hawks in New York.
The growing League is adding new, powerful programs, and those additions are bringing even more energy to the ASGR events.
“This is our first year in the League, and we’re very excited about having this opportunity to test ourselves,” added Doug Bush from Southern Starzz in Alabama. “You are competing against the top teams and the top programs at every event. We feel like we can compete with anyone in the country, so we’re excited about this opportunity.”
The benefits for the participating programs go well beyond the walls of the gyms where events are played.
“It’s great competition and great exposure, and that’s very important to the kids. We have grown from three teams to eight competitive teams in the past couple of years. We work hard to promote our program, but one of the things that incoming players like is the idea of playing in the ASGR Summer League,” explained Alfred Motton from FBC Mo in Georgia.
The name of the game in summer ball is exposure, but every competitor likes to see a trophy at the end of the tunnel.
Being in the League adds a little more excitement for the summer,” said Shambric Williams of Idaho Hoopdreams. “Our girls love competition, so the League is perfect for us, but it also changes our outlook or our mindset a little. There’s just more excitement.”
Here is a quick look at the teams that rose to the top in the early season ASGR Hoopfest events:
Big Southern programs dominated the ASGR Hoopfest Atlanta. At the 17U level, brackets were won by FBC Mo 2017 17U, the Southern Starzz 2018 Looney 16U, and Memphis Elite Daniels 17U. In the younger ages, Brandan Wright 2018 Black 16U won the 16U bracket; FGB 2019 15U took the 15U title; and FGB Future 14U won the 14U Bracket.
The 17U bracket winners at the ASGR Hoopfest Boston were Mass Rivals Black and MT Elite. The two 16U brackets in Boston were won by the Maine Firecrackers and LI Renegades Blue. Mass Premier Swish earned the 15U bracket, and iExcel Walter was the 14U bracket winner.
The ASGR Hoopfest Chicago has three brackets. The Future Xtreme Black won the 17U division, IL Defenders D’Apice was the 16U winner, and MN Stars Nelson 2019 14U took the 15U bracket in Chicago.
Out west, the Vegas Bulldogs and So Cal Select 2016 won the two 17U brackets at ASGR Hoopfest Los Angeles. Team Superstar took home the title in the 15U division in Los Angeles.