Prince William County's top boys and girls basketball players will see who the best 3-point shooters, two-ball team and slam-dunkers are March 12 when Hoops Fest 18 takes the court at Freedom High School in Woodbridge.
Proceeds from the event, which will now be sponsored by Prince William Today, will go to the family of Chris Yung, the 35-year-old Prince William police officer who died in a New Year’s Eve crash on Va. 28 in Bristow.
Yung is survived by his wife, Robin, and three young children, Christopher, Clayton and Paige.
In 17 years, Hoops Fest has raised $128,062.99 helping families in need in Prince William County. Last year, the event was held at Hylton High School, where $7,889.97 was raised for Trevor Blake, a young boy battling cancer.
The year before, the event, also held at Hylton, raised a record $13,100 for Josh Himan, a Hylton graduate who was paralyzed by an IED while serving with the Marines in Afghanistan in September of 2009. The money went to help build an extension on the Himan's Woodbridge house to make it more wheelchair accessible.
Hoops Fest was first held in 1996 at Woodbridge High School when $4,000 was raised to help Woodbridge graduate Lee Thompson Jr. get prosthetics for his legs after both were amputated when he contracted spinal meningitis.
The Potomac News, and later combined Potomac News and Manassas Journal Messenger, sponsored the event each year. With the closing of the News & Messenger last month, Prince William Today and InsideNoVa.com decided to keep the Hoops Fest tradition alive.
At Hoops Fest, competitors participate in four different skills competitions: The boys and girls 3-point shootout, the two-ball competition and the slam dunk.
Two of the defending champions from last year's event are back: slam-dunk winner J.R. Washington from Stonewall Jackson and boys 3-point winner Stephen Brown from Christ Chapel. Brown will have the opportunity to become the first three-time champion at the event if he wins this year's boys 3-point challenge.