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Winston-Salem chronicle. (Winston-Salem, N.C.) 1974-current, June 23, 2016, Page B2, Image 12

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Next Level Track Club alum Shanice Jones takes time to give one-on-one pointers to a young runner. Phoaoc by Timothy kataacy Youth Track from page hi Next Level has kids as young as 6 years old on the team, and they aim to groom them until they make the next step in their athletic endeavors. The club has graduated many athletes that have gone on to compete on the collegiate level as well as international competition. "We had a real sense of unity, and everyone always cheered one another on whether they were good times or bad times" said Shanice Jones, Next Level Track Club alum. "We worked hard and we played hard. It was some of the best times of my life. I miss the connections most of all. Seeing the young kids look up to the big kids and seeing the growth in myself, it's like a family. The parents come out in full force to support the youth on the team. They attend all of the practices as well as the events the club travels to. Yolanda Shepherd-Re id, mother of club member Derrick Reid Jr., said she loves to see the kids happy and having fun no matter what place they finish. She real ly enjoys the family atmosphere of the group. Her two older daughters have come through the program, and the eldest daugh ter now attends Campbell University. The team competes all across North Carolina as well as in neighboring states like Virginia and South Carolina. Last weekend, the club competed in the 17th annual Jim Law Track & Field Invitational in Charlotte. Their focus during the prior week at practice was to shore up baton hand-offs during the relay events to ensure they do not drop the baton. The 4 *100 meter relay team had some issues with exchanges during the second and third legs, so extra time was spent to nail it down. Hayes stated he has taken somewhat of a back seat in coaching and has passed the majority of the duties to his younger assis tants. He is proud of what his team has accomplished and looks forward to where they can go from here. "I have passed the torch to the younger coaches and they all have their own area of expertise they bring to the team," Hayes said. *It's not just track and field with us; we are with the kids all through the year. Track is just one phase of our activities because you can't make it through college by just running. You have to have the intel ligence to complete the work in the class room as well." Yolanda Shepherd-keul, mother of Next Level runner Derrick Reid Jr., is very pleased with the performance of her son and the team. Head Coach Buddy Hayes gets his runners ready for some wind sprints during track practice. ??K ^,-V I Pbott* by Timctfky Rauiy The Burgees family honors and remembers Celeste while doing good deeds for the community. From left to right Donna, Celeste's mother; Caleb, her brother; and Allen, her father. Reggie Davit toon for a thunderous one hand dunk during the Celeste Burgess Memorial Basketball game. I The girts fight for the jump ball at the onset of the Celeste Burgess Memorial basketball game last Saturday. Memory from page B1 The fundraiser helps us have turkey giveaways dur ing Thanksgiving, toy give aways during Christinas and is going to help some one go to college. There were two games played Saturday night, one for the girls and one for the boys. The girl's game started rather slowly, as they ran up and down the * court getting a feel for one another. Once they were into the flow of the game, the girls started raining three-pointers left and right. The game swayed back and forth until after half time the pink team took control of the game with some timely steals and pinpoint passes to expand the lead to double figures. The pink team extended the lead late into the second half highlighted by a Stephen Curry-like 35 foot S three-pointer as time was expiring. The Pink team defeated the white team by the score of 65 to 47. Next on the court were the boys, who came out of the gates reminiscent of an NBA All-Star game, with fancy dribbling and alley oop passes. The boys came out just as cold as the girls from downtown but real ized their bread and butter was in die paint. The high flying dunks by Reggie Davis and Jahlil Rawley kept everyone on the edge, even when they missed. As the game progressed and the defensive intensity waned the green team start ed to assert their domi nance on the offensive end of the floor In the end, the green team ran away with game, defeating the white team by the score of 94 to 65. The players of the games were made up of old Celeste's former team mates, local AAU (Amateur Athletic Union) players, and people who respected her game. Everyone seemed to enjoy the game and had a good time. People were not there to compete; they were there to honor a fallen friend. "I grew up with Celeste, and we had been friends since the age os"4," Ciani Byrotn said. "Her death devastated us but it motivated us to try harder Vl because no matter what, Celeste played her hardest and worked harder than anyone. She had the biggest heart on the team and pushed everyone to do their best ." Celeste was beloved by everyone, but her father said it best when he stated, "Yeah she was a very good ball player, but she was an even better person, and that's what really matters." ? 4

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