For the second year in a row, the visiting Sports Reach basketball team out of Campbellsville, Kentucky, USA, has maintained a spotless record against local teams, as they expanded their record to 5-0 in games played over the past week in Orange Walk, Belmopan and now Belize City with a 53-42 victory last night over San Pedro Tigersharks at Birds Isle. Though there is no Belizean semi-pro league right now, the Tigersharks are not exactly pushovers, as they feature Keith “Superman” Acosta and Stephen “Muerte” Williams. The Sports Reach squad also had a 5-0 record last year. They arrived in Belize on Saturday last, have played every night since, and should have little difficulty with tonight’s encounter in San Pedro with a San Pedro High School selection.
Delegation spokesman Stan Curry said Sports Reach is a Christian outreach ministry, founded in 1986 by Robby Speer. “We travel to different places around the country and around the world, and we play basketball and girls softball to get our name out there and get into venues, but mainly to tell people about Jesus Christ… We also brought about 1,300 pairs of shoes last year; this year we brought a little less than a thousand pairs of shoes.” This year the footwear was reportedly distributed between Lake-I Baptist Church on Vernon Street and Christ Renew His Parish.
According to Brads Neal of the Belize Basketball Federation, Sports Reach coach Tom Shubreth is a Division 1 coach at Jacksonville State University in Alabama, who has been coaching for 31 years. “He is very versatile. He is looking at the players, and we’re also trying to shop to find a spot for some of our young kids that have the talent to make it to the next level. It’s like we’re trying to do two things in one - sharing the word, but also getting the kids the opportunity like we did for Devin (Daly).”
The Sports Reach team is scheduled to leave on Sunday for the U.S. Amandala