Four Glades Central students selected for basketball trip

BELLE GLADE — Four students from Glades Central High School have been given the opportunity to attend an All-Star basketball camp in New Jersey this week.

Special to the Lake Okeechobee News
La’Darius Johnson (sophomore, Glades Central High School), Ja’Kavion Nonar (sophomore, Glades Central High School), Willie Scott (senior, Glades Central High School) and Venanza Vereen (senior, Glades Central High School) were selected by a group of former NBA players to participate in a boys All-Star camp in Paterson, N.J. from Aug. 12 through Aug. 16. Pictured left to right are PBSO Deputy, Kenneth Torrence, First Lady of Belle Glade, Lisa Wilson, Ja’Kavion Nonar, Venanza Vereen, La’Darius Johnson, Willie Scott and Sheriff’s Foundation Director, John Flanagan.

Sophomore La’Darius Johnson, sophomore Ja’Kavion Nonar, senior Willie Scott and senior Venanza Vereen were selected by a group of former NBA players to participate in a boys All-Star camp in Paterson, N.J. from Aug. 12-16.

The boys will be accompanied by Glades Central High School Raiders basketball coach Kenneth Torrence, or as he’s called by his players “Coach T.” Torrence has split his time as a deputy with the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office (PBSO) and coach of the Raiders basketball varsity team since back in 2012.

Back in June, the Ball Stars Youth Camp made a stop in Belle Glade and, with the help of PBSO, ran a program for 125 kids. Ball Stars is led by former NBA All-Stars Otis Birdsong and Micheal Ray Richardson. The free summer program is provided to children and teens in the local community. According to Ball Stars Youth Camp, 90% of the youth participating in the summer camp are from single parent/low-income households. Ball Stars Youth Camp educates in both basketball and important life skills.

During the camp held in Belle Glade in June, the four Glades Central players stood out from the rest and were able to make an impression. Because of that they were invited to join other select kids from around the country at the All-Star camp in New Jersey.

All of the travel expenses for attending the All-Star camp will be covered by the Palm Beach County Police Athletic League and the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Foundation. The two groups presented a check to the players on Aug. 6 at First Baptist Church in Belle Glade.

The Palm Beach County Police Athletic League is a nonprofit, charitable organization that builds partnerships between youth, law enforcement and the community through recreational and educational programs designed to encourage, enhance and develop good citizenship and improve the quality of life in Palm Beach County.

The Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Foundation is a nonprofit, charitable organization that positively impacts the community served by the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office by helping underprivileged children, enhancing public safety and assisting deputies in need.

Richard Marion is a staff writer and photographer at Lake Okeechobee News and can be reached at rmarion@newszap.com.

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