June 29, 2016

Mostly clear

Hoop-N-Que: Bragging rights are on the line

MEDINA — Over the past seven summers, the top high school, college and professional players from around the area have gathered at Ray Mellert Park.

This summer is no different as the park will host the eighth annual Hoop-N-Que on the Mantrell Price Basketball Court on Aug. 3 and 4, highlighted by a full-court 4-on-4 adult tournament.

“This year is bigger than ever,” event coordinator Adrian Stockman said. “The one thing that makes this special is that it’s a cheap community event that helps raise a little money for underprivileged inspiring basketball players in the area.

“It’s been crazy from our first year, where we had no baskets on the court and had to have two roll-away hoops. Each year, it’s gotten bigger.”

The adult division draws former local high school standouts and professional players from all over the state in a winner-take-all format for a cash prize. Games are decided by the first team to 25 points or whichever squad is leading when the 30-minute running clock expires. Entry fee is $250 per team and rosters cannot exceed eight players.

After having six teams from Cleveland, Canton and Mansfield in last year’s tourney, the field is at 10 as of Monday night. Stockman wants that number at 16 or lower.

“This was always more local before, but now this is one of the biggest events in Northeast Ohio,” Stockman said. “We always get ex-Akron and Kent State guys and others that play in the Cleveland and Akron Pro-Am Leagues. You never know what guys teams are bringing.”

Along with the money tournament, the Hoop-N-Que will feature its annual 3-on-3 junior tournament and the second edition of the 38-and-over bracket.

Boys and girls will play in divisions by grade (3-4, 5-6, 7-8 and 9-12), with each team guaranteed three games in a pool-play format. The winners receive trophies.

The team entry cost is $100, with rosters not to exceed more than four players. The men’s 38-and-over bracket also will be limited to four players with an entry fee of $100.

T-shirts will be awarded to the winning teams in both divisions.

Those not playing are welcome to enjoy food, music, games and a cornhole tournament in an effort to raise money for charity.

“It’s a good thing,” Stockman said. “That was the situation I was in — a single mom with four kids — so we always received help. That’s what I try to do — give back and help these kids out.”

Deadline to register is Monday. Entry forms and all other information can be found at sbcbasketballclub.com. Anyone interested in sponsoring should contact Stockman at (614) 584-9106 or bballstock14@live.com.

In association with Hoop-N-Que, the Mantrell Price Scholarship will be awarded to help offset pay-to-participate fees for Medina High athletes. Price, who passed away in 2010, co-founded the event with Ramon Burnham and was a 1993 graduate of Medina, where he played football and ran track.

Each year, the foundation issues two scholarships to male or female athletes who participate in track and field, football or basketball and maintain a 2.5 grade-point average. Winners are selected based on an essay contest on the topic, “Why sports are important to me.”

Registration forms for the scholarship only will be available at Hoop-N-Que.

Contact Dan Brown at sports@medina-gazette.com.