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Basketball camp instills values beyond the court

Basketball camp instills values beyond the court

PIÑON, Ariz.

For sure, these kids are learning about basketball. Former NBA star AC Green and the other coaches are making sure of that. By the end of the last day, they’re scrimmaging with the coaches and making some good plays.

But honestly? The AZ Pride Basketball Camp that was held here last week is a sneaky way to teach values that will carry them not just through sports but through life.

The younger kids get it. “We’re learning how not to bully people,” declared Kristy Bahe, 10, of Low Mountain, Arizona. “And how, people, when they’re injured – ”

“ – you help them up and ask them if they’re OK,” finished her new friend Darthia Kaye, 11, of Piñon.

Christopher Gray Jr., chief operations officer for camp sponsor Arizona Facts of Life and AZ Pride coach, would have been happy to hear this exchange. “What we’re teaching here is respect, love, trust, hard work and dedication,” he said.

And layups, passing and dribbling, added Britney Help, 16, of Greasewood, who came for the basketball but stayed for the new friends, like 17-year-old Lyle Badoni, who played basketball on his high school team last year but said he needed to go back and review the basics. Badoni must have picked up on the values stuff as well, as he ended up winning the camp’s sportsmanship award for encouraging the younger players.

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About The Author

Cindy Yurth

Cindy Yurth is the Tséyi' Bureau reporter, covering the Central Agency of the Navajo Nation. Her other beats include agriculture and Arizona state politics. She holds a bachelor’s degree in technical journalism from Colorado State University with a cognate in geology. She has been in the news business since 1980 and with the Navajo Times since 2005, and is the author of “Exploring the Navajo Nation Chapter by Chapter.” She can be reached at cyurth@navajotimes.com.


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