Dribble Kings Win Age-Group National Championship In Erie
When Maceo Wofford was a basketball star at Jamestown High School more than 20 years ago, his routine on game nights was predictable.
First, he would figuratively light up a sold-out McElrath Gymnasium for 30 points or more, and then he would spend the rest of his evening regaling his grandmother, Hattie, with all the details of his spectacular performance at her home a stone’s throw from the gym.
Two decades removed from those highlight-reel performances, Maceo, now 39, paid another visit to his grandmother Sunday night to deliver more good news, but of a different kind.
The Dribble Kings AAU team — a collection of area seventh-graders that Maceo coaches — are national champions.
“The smile that covered her face was the exact same smile she had when I was in high school,” Maceo said Monday night.
The 10 youngsters earned that title after winning the Shoot the Rock championship in Erie, Pennsylvania over the weekend with a 6-0 record. Team members included: Greg Brumagin, Bishop Butts and Sam Arrington of Jamestown; Tommy Nyquist and Braylon Barnes of Warren, Pennsylvania; and Javory Elverton, Stephon Porter, Amaree Pickens, Rayfes Roberts Jr. and Layveon Gore of Erie.
It was a special moment for the youngsters, but it was extra special for Maceo. A 2017 Chautauqua Sports Hall of Fame inductee, Maceo carved out a basketball career that took him from a record-setting four varsity seasons at JHS, to success at Iona College followed by two pro stops, including one with the Jamestown Jackals of the Premier Basketball League.
But as Maceo, assisted by Rayfes Roberts Sr., watched his team battle it out at Erie Bank Sports Park over a two-day stretch, it was hard to know what meant more — his personal success as a player or the joy he experienced in seeing the Dribble Kings win it all.
“We had one practice. It’s tough to get them all together at one time,” Maceo said, “but we have guys who have a high basketball IQ. Anything that I said, they were able to do, so that made my job a lot easier. … They matched my intensity. That’s why we came out on top.”
And that prompted his visit with his grandma upon his return to Jamestown.
“She always told me that whatever you’re passionate about, don’t let anybody stop you,” Maceo said.
The youngsters from Jamestown, Warren and Erie were more than up to the challenge.