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NYBA plans to host invitational tournament next year - May 27, 2006

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THE Northern Youth Basketball Association is hoping to host a tournament patterned after the Shell Guam 2005 Drug-Free Thanksgiving Youth Basketball Invitational.
NYBA president Joe Diaz said the Guam Youth Basketball Association is requesting NYBA to hold a tournament here on Saipan with teams from Guam coming over to play the commonwealth's squads.
"We went to Guam last year for the Thanksgiving tournament and then after a few months, Guam asked if we can host a tournament here and have their teams compete against Saipan squads," Diaz said.
"We considered the idea because Guam was such a gracious host when we went there in December last year. It's like returning the favor they did for us," NYBA vice president George Cruz said.
But the NYBA officials said the invitational tournament would not be possible until next year.
"We cannot host this year because we will be preparing for the 2nd Northern Youth Basketball Association Tournament in November. But hopefully through the help of the community we can have it next year," Diaz said.
Diaz added that they are hoping to have more teams in the second edition of the NYBA caging.
In last year's inaugural season of the association, 16 squads participated in the tournament, which held competitions in the 12-and-under, 14-and-under and 16-and-under age groups.
The Capitol Hill Stars, Matansa Sparks, Sugar King Shooting Stars and Garapan Rollers represented the 12-and-under division.
Division 2 featured the Bwibwiis, Garapan Rollers 2, Matansa Sparks and Garapan Rollers 1, while Division 3 participants were the Bwibwiis, Garapan Rollers 1, 2 and 3, Capitol Hill and the Matansa Sparks 1 and 2.
Meanwhile, NYBA said they will be sending teams anew to GYBA's Thanksgiving tournament.
But this year, NYBA will not be fielding All-Star teams, but individual clubs with the Garapan Rollers squads and the Matansa Sparks leading the list.
Tinian is also invited to the Guam caging, while the House of Manhoben Saints are also being considered.
In last year's Guam Thanksgiving caging, the NYBA went home with two championship trophies and a runnerup.
NYBA's Division 1 and 2 All Stars ruled their respective age group, while the Division 3 All Stars placed second.
The Division 1 All-Stars (12-and-under age group) whipped the Agat Lakers in the finals, 38-28, at the University of Guam Fieldhouse, to give NYBA its first title.
In Division 2 (16-and-under), the All Stars outclassed the Barrigada Crusaders, 29-22, for NYBA's second crown.
The Division 3 All-Star team failed to complete the sweep as they bowed to the Umatac 76ers, 22-42, in the finals of the 18-and-under age group.
Sixty-four teams joined the four-day cagefest, which featured five age groups.
(Courtesy of Variety News)  

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