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BronxNet 81 Latino Sports 69 in 27th Annual Game & Family Day

MVP player for BxNet (holding trophy), Joe Cruz, Julio Pabón & Michael Knobe posing after the game when "Bragging Rights Trophy" was presented to BxNet. (Photo Latino Sports)

Bronx, NY: The Latino Sports 27th Annual Celebrity Basketball Game & Family Health Day took place yesterday Sunday August 29th, 2021, resuming after being cancelled last year due to the pandemic.

BxNet & Latino Sports always promoting “Friendship First, Competition Second”

Early morning organizers were still contemplating if the games would be able to take place due to the cloudy overcast and the few sprinkles of rain being felt. The courts were wet due to the rain on Saturday that left the courts unplayable. However, thanks to the great work of our co-sponsor, “Hoops in The Sun” (HITS) and their volunteers the courts were dried with blowers and by hand with towels. Latino Sports agreed to let Hoops in the Sun play several of their youth and the adult men’s final championship games that were forced to be cancelled due to this Summer’s rainy season.  Thus, this year’s games that have been taking place on the same day every year for the past twenty-seven years looked more like a basketball festival as the number of youth’s, parents, and spectators and a sound system with music on each court made this 27th annual games more festive than ever.

Games are fun, but very competitive. (Photo Latino Sports)

Unfortunately, the weather did affect the players for, both BronxNet and Latino Sports as many stayed away and cancelled thinking that the rain, they were seeing in their home area was also affecting Orchard Beach. As such, the games must go on and thanks to Joe Cruz, Jr. (President of Hoops in the Sun) who helped recruit some of this HITS volunteers to play for Latino Sports and several that were recruited from the BronxNet side the game took. There were many highlights, but one worth mentioning was to see both, Michael Knobe, Executive Director of BronxNet and the more senior Julio Pabón, President of Latino Sports play for exactly the last two minutes of the first half.

BronxCare health workers administering test to beach attendee. (Photo Latino Sports)

Latino Sports lost to BronxNet 81-69, but the score does not reflect the fun and comradery that these games always bring out in the participants and the spectators. Michael Knobe, and Julio Pabón,  summed it out best as they both spoke about the pride, they each have in sponsoring and participating in these yearly games . The fact that BronxCare Medical Systems provides the Health Mobile unit and staff to give free medical screenings for Cholesterol, High Blood Pressure and Sugar levels to all the participants is one of the highlights of this yearly event. Pabón explains it best, “The Bronx continues to have one of the worst overall health rates in the state and this is our contribution to help make the Bronx a healthier borough.”

Pabón also thanked the New York Yankees and the New York Mets for providing game tickets for each person that received a medical screening and for many of the volunteers and MVP players.

The second game between the Puerto Rico Pro Legends and the New York Senior Citizens League was also a must watch game to watch of veterans that show that no matter what age, you could still go out and do some form of exercise to help stay healthy. That game was a nail biter until the last second with the PR Pro Legends pulling off a controversial win 55-54 scoring on the referees whistle.

All in all everyone had a great time with many that only get to see each other on these Orchard Beach courts one every year for the last 27 years.

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