2ND ANNUAL MARY KLINE CLASSIC RAISES OVER $20,000 FOR CANCER RESEARCH
By Alex Schiffer
One of the biggest questions people probably asked themselves after last night’s Mary Kline Classic was probably whether or not the event affected their love for hoops, or their heart. The event’s second run was twice as big as last year as a sold out gym witnessed some of the nation’s best player’s show off their skills as way to aid in the fight to against cancer.
The event was created last year by RecruitScoop founder Alex Kline. Just 17 years old, the recruiting guru used his relationships with some of the best players in the country to bring them all together to play in memory of his late mother Mary, who died of a brain tumor when he was ten years old. Despite the compliments he’s received for being able to bring together such an extraordinary group of talent for such a great cause, Kline has continually said that he’s only doing it so his mother is remembered and honored the right way.
The evening started off with two children who recently lost their father to a brain tumor talking about Kline and how he’s helped them through the grieving process. The children easily moved the crowd and as the daughter finished her speech with a standing ovation. The crowd also got involved with the national anthem as the microphone was having trouble working, both the players and crowd assisted in the song.
Finally, the underclassmen game tipped off. The game would go back and forth the whole 40 minutes between the blue and red teams before the blue team would pull away in the fourth quarter and win by a score of 143-122. Jaren Sina would gather MVP honors for the red team as he finished with 10 points and 14 assists. Sina was clearly the most distributive player on the floor throwing ally-oops to Austin Colbert and Tyler Roberson which received a round of applause from the crowd. Jermaine Lawrence took home MVP honors for the winning blue team as he finished with 27 points.
In between games, three competitions would take place between the players. First up was the 3-point shootout which featured players such as Alex Mitola, Karl Towns, Jared Nickens, and other top marksman. Hallice Cooke would edge Towns by a single shot in the final round to take home the title. Ryan Arcidiacono, a late addition to the event would win the skills competition as the future Villanova Wildcat displayed why he had the most “pop” in his shot. Last up was the highly anticipated dunk contest which was sponsored by Fuse.
In the first round of the dunk contest, Austin Colbert stole the show by dunking over his AAU teammate Jaren Sina to get the crowd going. Wayne Selden would send the gym into frenzy after throwing the ball off the ball and finishing with a memorizing one hand jam. Seldon would move onto the final round where he would face Rondae Jefferson. Jefferson would then jump over Colbert to prove he had just as much air as Colbert did. Jefferson and Selden would share the dunk title.
The senior game capped off the evening and it was once again a back and forth affair for a while with Penn-State bound Brandon Taylor trying to break the backboard with his incredible slam dunks. The blue team would spark a rally in the fourth quarter and come back to win 123-111 with Wagner-bound Eric Fanning and Yale-bound Justin Sears garnering MVP honors for their teams.
At the end of the game it was announced that Kline had raised $20,000 for cancer research, double his original goal. Kline was more than happy with how the event saying “It was everything I ever wanted to be. I thought it was a great combination of players because they wanted to be there and wanted to help the cause. This was my wildest dream two years ago and I just wanted to raise so much money. It was amazing from beginning to end.”
NBE will also have a recruiting notebook from the event as some of the top underclassmen also discussed their current recruiting situations. Congrats to Alex Kline for a successful 2nd annual Mary Kline Classic and everyone is already looking forward to next year!