DSC announces national teams for Slam Dunk to the Beach tournament
More than a dozen teams from seven different states and Washington, D.C., have been selected to participate in the Slam Dunk to the Beach basketball tournament when the event makes its return to Lewes on Dec. 27-29.
Cape Henlopen High School, which will host the tournament after it’s hiatus of more than a decade, was one of five Delaware schools announced in March to have made the cut — with the other four being Salesianum, Sanford, St. Georges Tech and Caesar Rodney.
The other schools from across the country were announced by the Delaware Sports Commission at a press conference held at the University of Delaware last Wednesday, June 18. Some of the nation’s consistently top-ranked teams made the cut, including Gonzaga College High School (Washington, D.C.), Sunrise Christian Academy (Wichita, Kan.), Our Savior New American School (Centereach, N.Y.) and Ss. John Neumann-Goretti High School (Philadelphia, Pa.).
“We are fortunate to have a field that features some of the top programs and players in high school basketball,” said Matthew Robinson, chairman of the tournament and the DSC. “With a field of this caliber, Cape Henlopen’s gym is sure to be filled to capacity all three days of the tournament, which will not only provide an incredible atmosphere, but will also help bring patrons and visitors to the Delaware beaches during the winter season.”
The other national schools selected included: St. Vincent-St. Mary High School (Akron, N.J.), Roselle Catholic High School (Roselle, N.J.), Christ the King High School (Middle Village, N.Y.), Gill St. Bernard’s School (Gladstone, N.J.), Mt. St. Joseph’s High School (Baltimore, Md.).
Past Slam Dunk to the Beach tournaments have featured current NBA stars, including LeBron James (2001), Dwight Howard (2003), Carmelo Anthony (2000) and J.J. Redick (2000) — and this year’s tournament could including future stars, with a number of the Scout.com Top 100 players scheduled to attend.
An annual tournament with such nationally recognized talent can literally mean millions of dollars for the local economy, with states as nearby as Ohio reporting as much as $6 million in generated revenue per year for similar tournaments, according to the Greater Columbus Sports Commission.
“From merchants and hotel owners at Delaware beaches to basketball fans to the players themselves, Slam Dunk to the Beach has the power to impact our entire economy,” said Alan Levin, director of the Delaware Economic Development Office. “I hope Delaware businesses will realize what a chance they have here with Slam Dunk. By offering their support for this tournament, they will be investing in the economic potential of the state itself. It’s a win-win for all involved.”
Tickets are still available for the three-day tournament, although they are limited. To purchase tickets or find out more about the tournament, visit www.slamdunktothebeach.com. You can also follow the tournament on Twitter for updates, @SlamDunktoBeach.