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xtra xtra!
Posted July 21, 2005
Future Hoop Star
By Kevin Devlin

     Angel Serrano lives, sleeps, thinks, and dreams of someday becoming a professional basketball player. He knows that hard work, dedication, focus, determination, and willpower, as well as physical and mental toughness, are all necessary character traits that he will need to make it to the top. And that doesn't seem to bother him, because he's ready and willing to make the sacrifices to be successful.


      Angel, 14, just completed three years at the McCormack Middle School. His middle school team went undefeated in regular season play with a 15-0 record; they won the Boston Public School's Middle School North Division title. Angel averaged approximately 15 points per game.

     Angel also plays in the Boston Neighborhood Basketball League (BNBL) in the 15 and under division at the Condon School. His team, the Old Harbor Club, was 0-15 last season, but Angel and his teammates have turned it around this season. With an early and impressive 4-1 record, the Old Harbor Club is hoping to become regional champs and advance to the next tier of the city-wide playoffs.

     "We didn't win any games last year," said Angel. "But everyone got better and we are hoping to be the next champs."

     Angel plays basketball everyday. If he's not playing a game, he's practicing inside the Condon gym. If he's not practicing, he's exercising, doing calf muscle raises and push-ups, and a variety of other muscle-strengthening drills.

     Angel played soccer and baseball but then decided to focus all of his energy towards hoop.

     "I used to play other sports like soccer and baseball, but the only sport I like is basketball," said Angel. "I'm doing my best, working hard with my (middle school) coach, Malcolm Smith, who is also an assistant coach at UMass, Boston. He's teaching me a about the game"


      Condon Community Center fixture Jerry O'Neil has nothing but high praise for our young boy, whom he sees honing his hoop skills every afternoon up at the Condon gym.

     "Angel Serrano is a leader on and off the court," said Condon Community Center recreation coordinator Jerry O'Neil. "Angel practices daily at the Condon gym to perfect his game. He is a competitive point guard and he is not afraid to help out his teammates.

      "Angel is also a responsible and respectful young man," added O'Neil. "He was recently hired by ABCD. As a junior counselor in this program, he works closely with the Juniors Camp held at the Condon."
Angel is also doing well in the classroom, because he knows that schoolwork and athletics are equally important to his future. He made the Honor Roll twice as an eighth grader and intends to be a model student throughout high school.

      Angel hopes to attend Cathedral High School in the fall. He is concentrating on his hoop game every minute he can, and believes he can make it onto the varsity squad as a freshman.

     This will be the second challenge for our young student-athlete.

     His first challenge has already been successfully met, that being focused on school and athletics, two facets of his life he deems inseparable and vitally important to his future.



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