YMCA enjoying successful basketball season, gearing up for spring

The Alabaster YMCA branch will look to close out its basketball season and move into the spring season soon. (Contributed)

The Alabaster YMCA branch will look to close out its basketball season and move into the spring season soon. (Contributed)

By BAKER ELLIS / Sports Reporter

ALABASTER- In case you weren’t aware, winter is here. Cold, dreary days have become the norm in this post-Christmas, pre-spring holding pattern. For the Alabaster YMCA, the winter months signify a turn to the indoors and the hardwood, where youngsters can come forget about the cold and play basketball in a safe environment.

The Alabaster Y, which currently has 12 teams participating in its basketball programs spanning five separate age groups, has had a successful season, according to first-year Youth Sports Director Chris Honeycutt.

“Last year, we had about 70 kids participate in the league. This year we’re up to about 90,” said Honeycutt. “We have four teams in the 3-4-year-old-division, and four teams in the 5-6-year-old league, so that’s where the biggest concentration of our kids has been.”

The age groups, which span from 3-4-year-olds up to 11-12-year-olds, with every age group in between, provide a place for children of a wide age range to participate.

“Our older kids play mostly at Hoover and Pelham, because every Saturday we have four games for our youngest two divisions at our gym, “explained Honeycutt. “By the time the kids get older, a lot of them move on to either travel ball or another sport. The younger kids definitely take up most of our focus.”

The increase in numbers from last year is a good sign for the Y, which, according to Honeycutt, experiences their biggest challenge prior to every season.

“The most challenging thing is getting our leagues marketed,” Honeycutt relayed. “We want to make sure everyone knows to come sign up for every league, not just basketball.”

As the basketball season begins to wind down, Honeycutt and the YMCA are turning their attention to the spring sports, which include flag football volleyball and soccer.

“Sign-ups for our spring sports end Feb. 13, and practices for all three can start as early as Feb. 23,” said Honeycutt.

Parents can register for spring sports online at Ymcabham.org, or at the front desk of the Alabaster branch, located 117 Plaza Circle in Alabaster.