Welcome to the second issue of volume one of Swish, a weekly periodical with recaps and photos of Santa Monica YMCA youth basketball games, and other pertinent info such as standings, schedules, announcements and updates from the program.
With all of LA being excited with the new look Lakers starting the preseason, more excitement is being experienced in Santa Monica, with regular season games in all four divisions of the Fall YMCA youth basketball league. The current season is now in full swing, with games being played throughout each weekend.
Youth basketball at the Santa Monica YMCA is a skills based and developmental co-ed league, in which boys and girls are placed in divisions based on their skill level. Ages of players competing in the league are from 5 to 14.
Generally the average age of each division:
Rookies ages 5 to 6
Bantams ages 7 to 8
Minors ages 9 to 10
Majors ages 11 to 14.
Players may be moved up or down a division to place them at an appropriate skill level, in order to make their basketball experience enjoyable. After all, the YMCA is for youth development, healthy living, and social responsibility. The youth basketball program promotes all of these.
It has been estimated in recent studies, that around 70% of all kids quit playing sports by the time they are 13 years of age. Youth basketball at the YMCA is meant to be a recreational league, so that kids will continue to play sports throughout their childhood, and not have to worry about whether they are winning or competing at a high level that can put too much pressure on them to succeed.
Coaches, parents, and players of YMCA basketball always cheer for our team when we score a basket, but we also cheer for the opposing team when they score. Because, everyone who participates in YMCA basketball is a winner!
The Tigers opened the Fall 2018 YMCA basketball season with a victory. After a strong first half performance by both teams, the Tigers were able to pull ahead in the last quarter and pull off a hard-fought win. Wally Levitt led the team with four points, followed by Tiam Baraghoush with two points and Sylvie Levitt with one point. Submitted by Coach Ash Baraghoush
Hawks vs. Tigers
Amir Enayati lead the Hawks in scoring with 4 points and had a strong overall game with several rebounds, blocks, and steals. Kingston Andes, David Casparian, Ryan Drew, and Chase Jenkins were also active on the glass, keeping the game close down the stretch. Juney Jones showed some spark on defense, including drawing her first personal foul – a career high; a sign of things to come. Submitted by Coach Charles Ellinwood
Hawks vs Crows
Ryan Drew scored his first basket of the season and followed up with 5 rebounds against some very tough competition in the paint. Diego Gonzalez made his season debut, contributing with timely passes to Chase Jenkins and Amir Enayati who combined for 8 points to round out the scoring for the Hawks. Regan Shao, Devon Shao and Spencer Nelson showed solid improvement in their second game of the season.
Submitted by Coach Charles Ellinwood
Crows vs. Swans
Saturday, Oct. 6th — It was a battle of aviary proportions, as the Crows took flight against the Swans in a late afternoon tilt. In the end, the Crows soared to a 13-3 victory thanks to Alan Larkin’s wing play and 6 key points, while the defense worked together like birds guarding a nest. Player of the game, Veronica Machala had an impressive 6 steals, 3 rebounds, 1 block, plus 1 made free throw. Written by Coach Pete Harris
Crowns vs. Hawks
Sunday Oct 7th – The Crows wrapped up impressive back to back victories, defeating the Hawks by a 22-10 margin. It was the coming out party for Rookie League player Constantine Avrampoulous- Orlandou who made a claim to be the next basketball sensation coming out of Greece. He scored 8 points on an impressive selection of shots from the outside and near the basket. Dylan Kravitz also scored 8 points, and Veronica Machala continued her strong play with 4 points and multiple rebounds and blocks.
Written by Coach Bill Kravitz
A short handed Swans with 4 players to start the first half did their best to hold of a near full team of Crows. Brandon Israels did everything he could defending multiple players and blocking several shots, but a 5 on 4 matchup for the 1st half was too much for the Swans and the Crows were able to take the lead with a single free throw made by Benjamin Bassett being the only point posted by the undermanned Swans. At half time Swans picked up a 5th player when Lara Masood arrived to give the tired Swans at least a full team on the floor. Brandon Israels was able to get a basket for the Swans but with the 5 Swan players getting no rest and playing every minute – it wasn’t enough to match the Crows who ended up with a commanding 15-3 win against the Swans. Submitted by Coach Holden Hayes.
The Bengals were up against the sharp shooting Broncos, and even though the Bengals played excellent man to man defense, the Broncos put on a good shooting performance with their skilled marksman making quality shots from the outside. The Bengals started scoring more points in the 2nd half, and all players played hard. Kai Mevasse was a perfect 2 for 2 at the free throw line. Gavin O’Brien made a basket, and Julian Weinerman had two buckets. Late in the game, after a timeout, Dominic Drew assisted Austin O’Brien on his first points ever scored at the YMCA. After receiving the pass, Austin made a nice pivot turn and shot it in, to the excitement of the crowd. For the Bengals to see Austin score was as good as a victory, regardless of how the game turned out. Submitted by Coach Paul Drew
The Broncos has a strong presence with all team members playing a great game. Offensively, Parker Keslow, James Cook, Alex Ghiassi and Dagmawi Ayele contributed greatly. Defensively, Lucas Kim, Owen Roberts and Daisy Siegler did a great job. Submitted by Coach Kerri Keslow.
The Rams kicked off their Bantam season in dramatic fashion tying the Packers 10-10. The Packers pulled out to any early 10-2 lead, but the Rams tightened up their defense and closed the gap to 10-6 at the half. After a scoreless third quarter, the Rams added two baskets in the 4th quarter to tie the game. Jarvis Wakefield and Henry Brown paced the Rams with 4 points each, Bora Kocataskin tied the game with a clutch basket late in the 4th quarter. Submitted by Coach Peter Brown
Coming off a dramatic game against the Packers on Saturday, the Rams played another nail biter on Sunday against The Bucs. Both teams played great defense resulting in a low scoring 1st half in which the Bucs led 4-2 after the first 16 minutes. In the third quarter, the Rams started to crack the Bucs swarming zone defense. Jarvis Wakefield had a pair of buckets to tie the game a 6-6 after 3 quarters. In the 4th quarter, the Rams finally opened up the game with 2 baskets from Cam Pariser putting the Rams ahead 10-6 at the end of regulation. Henry Brown had two points and Jarvis Wakefield and Cam Pariser each had four points in the Rams victory. Final score after the Bucs sunk a free throw was 10-7. Submitted by Coach Peter Brown
The Bantam Titans had a busy schedule with two games this weekend and showed why they are a great team by having full attendance for both games. In a game vs. the Bucs on Saturday, the Titans has contributions from nearly everyone for the win. Ivan Gatynya scored two baskets and continued to rebound the ball well. Luke Hill and Kaden Friedman each scored a basket and played great defense. Ronan Hill continues to be a good passer. Erol Besincioglu handled the ball at point guard many times and found the open player for an easy basket. Alex Ma played great defense and had a few assists. Liam Mulholland continues to be huge in the middle and blocks many shots a game. Submitted by Coach Michael Ma
Coach Michael Ma assigns his Bantam Titans their defensive assignments. Photo courtesy of Sean Daly
In the Sunday game vs. the Packers, the Titans fell behind early 10-2 and spent the entire game mounting a comeback but fell just a bit short. A great effort nonetheless! Archer Aguilar led the comeback by driving to the basketball with Alex Ma and Luke Hill chipping in with a couple of baskets. Rayan Etemadnia is one of the toughest defenders on the court and continues to terrorize opposing teams with his defense. James Petrovich is still hot from the outside and made a couple baskets over the weekend. Great job Titans! Submitted by Coach Michael Ma
BUCS RECAP: Isabella Van Bilder Beek was awarded Most Outstanding Player honors by her coaches after a valiant effort in her team’s loss to the Titans on Saturday. The Bucs, the YMCA’s only all-girls team, continu
d to improve in their second game of the year, thanks to the tough play of point guards Monika Diaz and Josie Casas. Big men (er, girls) Amelia Morovich-Hess and Marina Shickler were also major assets. The Bucs came oh-so-close to their first victory of the season when they returned to the court on Sunday to meet the Rams. After holding a slim lead for most of the game, they ultimately came up 3 points short. Josie Casas was M.O.P. but the award but it was a true team effort with Victoria McNary picking up valuable on the job experience at PG. Annika Cook, Delilah Holdsey and Donna Enayati were all valuable contributors on defense. Submitted by Coach Sean Daly
The Chiefs came out quick with the help of Leul Belay scoring 6 points. However the Bears came back to bring it within 4 with help from the sharp shooting Kellen McDonough who also was incredible 5 for 5 with his free throws. While it was back and forth all game long, the Chiefs had control with the leadership of Arjun McIntosh, who had a game high 16 points.
The Bears made a late surge and took the lead early in the 4th quarter to bring the score within one, 25-26. As the game went back and forth, Asa Stiehm hit the shot that gave the Chiefs the lead and the eventual victory. In addition, Joseph Zak had 5 pts, Griffin Bochella added 5 and Alex Brick had 2 points and 10 rebounds for the Chiefs. Submitted by Leul Belay
The Minor League Eagles bounced back BIG from the opening week’s heartbreaking loss to best the Seahawks in week two. With tremendously improved ball movement, scrappy defense, and all-around team play, the Eagles started to show their potential. While every single player on the squad contributed to the victory, new comer Daara Shafipour put his leadership skills on display handling, distributing and scoring the ball with confidence. But scoring was far from limited to Shaipour with Sam Bassett, Aayan Lakhani, Darien Jones, Travis Waters and Oliver Ghiassi all contributing buckets. On the defensive end the team racked up double digit steals and rebound, with a few blocks to boot. Well done boys!! Submitted by Coach Michael-Jones Morales
With a team with no big players, our Packers knew we would need to handle the ball and play great defense to be competitive this season. Playing a Panthers team with 3 players bigger than our biggest was a challenge in the paint, but after a slow 1st QT that found us playing catch-up, we started to turn up the intensity in the 2nd QT. The boys came out even stronger in the 3rd QT to give us a comfortable lead that we would hold. Dom Kajota, Timosha Moncher, and Sam Rubin filled up the stat sheet with points, rebounds, and steals; but all 9 boys showed up and all played hard and played together. Very proud of how the boys listened and then made the requested changes at halftime and during time-outs. A good win to start the season. Submitted by Coach Rick Moncher
The Rams took some early punches from the Broncos but was able to gain control in the 2nd half and cruise to victory. Hustle was them name of the game for the Rams who were led by Sebastian Ramirez (8pts/11 rebs) and Griffin Pine (11 pts/5 steals). Orlando Popkin (6 pts) had to key baskets in the 2nd half while Brayden Stoll (4 pts/6 rebs/2 stl/1 assist) did a little of everything. Submitted by Coach Brent Stoll
This week’s Profile
Each week, Swish has a profile of a coach or player who inspires all of us involved in Santa Monica YMCA basketball.
This week’s profile is of Rookie coach: Charles Ellinwood
Charles has been a rookie coach for several years at the YMCA, and was “Coach of the year” for 2016-17 Santa Monica YMCA basketball. Charles is unique in the fact that he doesn’t have any children involved in the league. He coaches at the YMCA in order to help young children learn the game that he loves so much. Many players have started their YMCA basketball career with Charles, and many players first basket that they scored was thru the help of his coaching.
Dr. Paul Drew: “What got you involved with coaching youth basketball at the YMCA?”
Charles Ellinwood: Back in 2015, I reconnected with some dear friends of mine, Scott and Natalia Sullivan. Their sons, Conner and Ronan have been in the league for a few years now. Scott was about to start coaching Conner’s Bantam League team the Terrapins, and he asked me if I was interested in helping him coach. The idea of helping out in the community through basketball was appealing. Basketball has been good to me and I wanted to give back. I have been coaching at the Y ever since.
“What’s your greatest enjoyment with coaching these young players?”
I really enjoy seeing that transformation when a young player starts to understand the game and gains confidence in their own abilities. It is really powerful to witness when they make that shift. It might take a couple of games or a couple of seasons, but it is really rewarding to be a part of that process.
“I’ve seen you coaching, and I have to ask, how do you manage to stay so calm and collective throughout the game?”
Part of that was already established by the culture that this league has developed over the years. I believe that competition can either bring out the best in us, or it can bring out the worst. I also think that it is important as a coach to set that example for my team, so that is what I strive for each game.
All of us parents can’t thank Charles enough for his dedication to our kids and the program. He’s that one in a million person that makes all of our lives better through motivating and educating the younger generation.
Special thanks to interim YMCA youth basketball director Christian Gonzalez for bringing me the score sheets. It should be noted that with the transition that this season is going through after Pete Arbogast’s retirement, stats are limited, so there will be no statistical box scores kept, in order to have the season run smoothly.
Saturday October 6th
Hawks 4, Tigers 7
Crows 15, Swans 3
Bucs 6, Titans 18
Rams 10, Packers 10
Bengals 10, Broncos 20
Seahawks 20, Eagles 33
Chiefs 39, Bears 34
Falcons 13, Giants 19
No games scheduled
Sunday, October 7th
Crows 22, Hawks 10
Titans 17, Packers 24
Rams 10, Bucs 7
No games scheduled
Dolphins 34, Ravens 25
Raiders 39, Colts 56
Packers 35, Panthers 28
Rams 31, Broncos 27
Teams are awarded 5 points for a win, 3 points for a tie, 1 point for a loss, 0 points for a forfeit. Tournament games have greater point value. Teams are listed in their place in the standings with W-L-T and team points
Crows 2-1-0, 11 points
Bulldogs 1-0-0, 5 points
Cats 1-0-0, 5 points
Tigers 1-0-0, 5 points
Hawks 0-2-0, 2 points
Swans 0-2-0, 2 points
Titans 2-1-0, 11 points
Broncos 2-0-0, 10 points
Packers 1-0-1, 8 points
Rams 1-0-1, 8 points
Bengals 1-1-0, 6 points
Bucs 0-3-0, 3 points
Jets 0-1-0, 1 point
Steelers 0-1-0, 1 point
Chiefs 2-0-0, 10 points
Eagles 1-1-0, 6 points
Bills 1-0-0 5 points
Giants 1-0-0, 5 points
Vikings 1-0-0, 5 points
Bears 0-2-0, 2 points
Falcons 0-2-0, 2 points
Seahawks 0-1-0, 1 point
Colts 1-0-0, 5 points
Dolphins 1-0-0, 5 points,
Packers 1-0-0, 5 points
Rams 1-0-0, 5 points
Broncos 0-1-0, 1 point
Panthers 0-1-0, 1 point
Raiders 0-1-0, 1 point
Ravens 0-1-0, 1 point
All games are played in the gymnasium of the Santa Monica YMCA
SATURDAY, OCTOBER 13, 2018
10:30 AM SWANS VS CATS
11:40 AM BULLDOGS VS TIGERS
12:50 PM BRONCOS VS PANTHERS
2:00 PM RAMS VS RAIDERS
3:10 PM PACKERS VS RAVENS
4:20 PM DOLPHINS VS COLTS
5:30 PM SEAHAWKS VS GIANTS
6:40 PM JETS VS STEELERS
SUNDAY, OCTOBER 14, 2018****PICTURE DAY #1****
9:30 AM BILLS AND CHIEFS TAKE TEAM AND INDIVIDUAL PICTURES
10:30 AM EAGLES AND VIKINGS TAKE TEAM AND INDIVIDUAL PICTURES
10:30 AM BILLS VS CHIEFS GAME
11:35 AM BILLS, CHIEFS, EAGLES AND VIKINGS TAKE LARGE GROUP PHOTO
11:40 AM FALCONS AND SEAHAWKS TAKE TEAM AND INDIVIDUAL PICTURES
11:40 AM EAGLES VS VIKINGS GAME
12:50 PM FALCONS VS SEAHAWKS GAME
12:50 PM BEARS AND GIANTS TAKE TEAM AND INDIVIDUAL PICTURES
1:55 PM FALCONS, SEAHAWKS, BEARS, GIANTS TAKE LARGE GROUP PHOTO
2:00 PM BEARS VS GIANTS GAME
2:00 PM BENGALS AND STEELERS TAKE TEAM AND INDIVIDUAL PICTURES
3:10 PM BENGALS VS STEELERS GAME
3:10 PM TITANS AND CHARGERS TAKE TEAM AND INDIVIDUAL PICTURES
4:15 PM BENGALS, STEELERS, TITANS, RAMS TAKE LARGE GROUP PHOTO
4:20 PM TITANS VS RAMS GAME
4:20 PM BUCS AND PACKERS TAKE TEAM AND INDIVIDUAL PHOTOS
5:30 PM BUCS VS PACKERS GAME
5:30 PM JETS AND BRONCOS TAKE TEAM AND INDIVIDUAL PHOTOS
6:35 PM BUCS, SAINTS, JETS, BRONCOS TAKE LARGE GROUP PHOTO
6:40 PM JETS VS BRONCOS GAME
Thank you very much,
Dr. Paul Drew, editor and publisher of Swish