By Bill Swensen
Another great season of St. Camillus/ St. Virgilius basketball came to a close with six teams facing off to see who the champions would be in 2023. The first championship game was in the Senior Boys league (4th – 8th grade). In this game, the Purple team, led by their coach Tom McDonagh, started out on fire. They just couldn’t seem to miss and unfortunately for the Red team, coached by Adam Bishop, it seemed like nothing would go in. Ty Duffy was amazing for Purple. He knocked down six 3-pointers and led his team with an incredible 34 points. Sean McDonagh also played a fantastic game for Purple. He was ripping down rebounds on both ends of the court and poured in 18 points of his own. Although the Red team never gave up and made several runs to try and catch up, they never could overcome the original deficit and the Purple team went on to claim the championship.
The next game was in the Girls league (4th – 8th grade). The Green team, coached by Allison Chavanne, faced off against the Purple team, coached once again by Tom McDonagh. This game looked a lot like the first with the Green team in the early goings knocking down everything they put up, and the Purple team just not being able to find the bottom of the net. Ashley Chavanne played her best game of the year. She did everything—dominated the boards, ran the offense as their point guard, and scored a season high 17 points. Meghan Burns and Mara Brady were terrific, as always. Without them, there would have been no victory for Green on this night. Kudos to the Purple team who kept fighting and cut the lead to single digits in the fourth quarter, but they could never make that one big push they needed to get over the top. The Green team showed great poise in this game and was able to take home a well-deserved championship.
The last game of the season was in the Junior Boys league, and we definitely saved the best game for last. This game was a duel between the Green team, coached by Byron Ahlemeyer and Rich Larkin, against the Purple team, coached by Lorenzo Santigo. The game started out looking like the first two with the Purple team jumping out to a 10-point lead and holding that lead for most of the game. This game featured amazing performances from Ryan Tubridy and Mason Hance for the Green team who both dropped 19 points each. On the other side, Frank O’Toole was doing everything he could to get Purple a victory. Killing it on the boards, knocking down four 3-pointers and ending up with 20 points. It was the fourth quarter when the excitement really began. The Green team, was still down ten when the comeback started. They came storming all the way back, and with just seconds to go, tied the game and sent it to overtime. The crowd was going crazy and the momentum the Green team built up in regulation went on to carry them to an amazing 3-point win for the championship.
Thank you to all the coaches who volunteered their time to teach our kids how to play the game the right way. Thank you to Ron Hooks who organized all the referees for the league. We also can never forget the special thank you that needs to go to Calvin Stanley, the Program Director, who is at every single game and spends hours and hours of his time making sure that the league runs smoothly. It should be noted that he’s been doing this for over 20 years now. Lastly, I need to thank Monsignor Ahlemeyer for his continuous support and leadership. Without him, there is no program.
Well, that’s it for this year. Remember this league is open to everyone, so please come join us next year. I guarantee your kids will have a lot of fun.