Tournament started in 1978 gets a reboot
BY TEVIN STINSON
Although the game of basketball is a team sport when it comes down to gaining bragging rights and determining who’s the best, real ballers know the only way to do that is by strapping up and playing your opponent one-on-one.
On Saturday, May 20 the Hansel Hentz Foundation is inviting the best ballers in the city to do just that when they host the First Annual Hansel Hentz One-on-One Basketball Tournament. The tournament held at 14th Street Recreation Center will be a reboot of the old tournament started by the late Hansel Hentz in 1978.
A 1963 graduate of Anderson High School, Hentz was a standout athlete in both basketball and football. Although he loved the game of basketball, Hentz used the game of football to earn a scholar-ship to Fayetteville State University. That passion for basketball stuck with him, however. After graduating, Hentz returned to the city to work for the Winston-Salem Recreation and Parks Department. There, he used the fundamentals of basketball to teach life lessons. Hentz also started the popular summer basketball league at 14th Street Recreation Center that featured some of the city’s best high school and college athletes. In 2012, Hentz earned the Northwest YMCA Strong Award, which is awarded annually to individuals who demonstrate exceptional volunteerism. Earlier this month Hentz was also announced as a member of the 2017 class of the Winston-Salem High School Sports Hall of Fame.
Hentz’ daughter Malika Hentz-Flecther said she thought about bringing the tournament back after los-ing her father late last year following a brief illness.
“My father touched a lot of people through the game of basketball so we thought it would be a good idea to bring back what he started in 1978,” said Hentz-Fletcher. “After seeing how many people he reached and inspired I knew we had to do something to continue his legacy in this community.”
The double elimination tournament will be open to anyone at least 18 years old and will include three rounds of play. First round games will be played to 10, semi-final games will be played to 12, and the championship game will be played to 16. A coin flip will determine first ball and just like the original tournament no hand checking is allowed and participants must call their own fouls.
Registration for the tournament ends on Monday, May 1. An entry fee of $30 will go to the Hansel Hentz Foundation. For more information contact Malika Hentz-Flecther, Louis Lowery or Carlos Gregory at 336-794-6527 or 336-727-2891. You can also sign up by stopping by the 14th Street Recreation Center.