Haris Memorial Tournament December 2013
Sligo all Stars travelled to Manchester on Friday the 27th of December to participate in the Haris Memorial Tournament. This event pays tribute to Haris Charalambous, one of the top players to come out of the Magic youth programme. Haris died suddenly while training with his NCAA Division 1 Toledo University team in October 2006.
Sligo all Stars U18's were invited to take part as reigning U16 All Ireland Champions and would have to prove themselves as the tournament boasted top class opponents in 2 two England International youth sides and Manchester Magic U18s among others. It doesn't get any better than this playing against some of the best teams out there.
Their 1st game on Friday was against last year's winners CB Cornella from Spain. Sligo were up against it from the start and fought for every scrap as the bigger Spanish team used their height advantage to good effect. The energetic Sligo All-Stars lost a turnover-filled game against Spanish opposition but showed fight by drawing the second quarter and winning the fourth, the final score in this match was CB Cornelia 96 - Sligo All Stars 57. leading scorer for Sligo Philip Hamilton 17pts.
Sligo played two matches on Saturday and were first up against Manchester Magic U18's in the afternoon. they boasted five England U18 squad members of their own.The final score was Magic U18's 100 Sligo All Stars 38. Leading scorer for Sligo Tobi Brockman 13pts.
Their 2nd match of the day pitted them against England U17,s and the result was England U17's 86 - Sligo All Stars 51. Leading scorer for Sligo Cian Lally 14pts. Sligo were finding some form after their earlier matches and kept a big England outfit honest for the entire game as Sligo competed for everything and proved they weren't there just to make up the numbers.
Sligo were on the court for 12noon on Sunday and were playing for a tournament ranking as they were out of the running for a semi final place. Their opponents Manchester Mag
ic U16's. were to be their opponents and pride was at stake in this encounter. Sligo took the game to the Manchester team from the start and finished worthy winners. The final score Magic's 56 Sligo All Stars 65. Leading scorers for Sligo Cian Lally 21, Tobi Brockman 21.
Sligo now were up against England U17's for a 2nd time and this match would determine the final ranking of 5th or 6th place. This match turned out to be a real nail biter as Sligo raced into the lead and won the first quarter 17-16 with Karlois Gunka in red hot form for Sligo as he brought the game to England. However England clawed their way back into the game leading by a mere 2 points 32-30 at half time. The final quarters swung in favour of England as Sligo tired and the final score was England 69 - Sligo All Stars 45. Leading scorer for Sligo Karlois Gunka 22pts.
Sligo All Stars U18's finished a creditable 6th place and will have learned hugely from their weekend in Manchester as they look to improve their position in the Shannonside league with the senior team and to progress from there.
Pos Team Name
1 England U18
2 Magic U18
3 Akademie Weser
4 CB Cornella
5 England U17
6 Sligo All-Stars
7 Magic U16
8 CBSZ Basketball Academy Zurich Wildcats