THE Portland Basketball Association will begin its 2021 autumn junior season on Wednesday night with hundreds of young athletes now just a handful of sleeps away from hitting the court.
The PBA’s junior program will have a new structure this year, adjusting the allocation process and simplifying when games are played during the week.
In the most recent season, the PBA had A grade, B grade, C grade and D grade girls and boys competitions, spread across Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday evenings.
From now on, all junior boys basketball will take place on Friday evenings, with under-10, under-12, under-14 and under-16 competitions running.
All junior girls basketball will take place on Wednesday evening, with under-11, under-13 and under-16 divisions competing.
PBA organiser Anna Impey said all signs were positive heading towards the new season.
“We’re still in the process of finalising our junior teams (as of Wednesday afternoon) but it looks like we’ll have nearly 40 teams registered,” Impey said.
“The committee is feeling really positive about how the season is looking, particularly coming after 2020 and COVID-19.
“We’re seeing all of the familiar faces returning and some new faces too which is exactly what we want.”
The junior competition will also have a new aesthetic look this season too, following the arrival of the PBA’s new reversible uniforms.
The new tops have both a black and yellow side, matching the colour scheme worn by the Portland Coasters’ representative sides.
Impey said the new design would promote an even stronger sense of unity within the Association.
“We’re really happy with how the new tops look,” she said.
“It was a big investment from the Association, but the end result will be a big sense of unity across all of our teams, everyone will really be on the same page and the practical aspect is great too.
“Moving all of the junior girls games to Wednesday nights and all of the boys junior games to Friday has been another great move too.
“It should add a lot of cohesion to the competition and add that sort of tournament-like atmosphere to the stadium each week, and all the other juniors can head over and watch their friends in other games and grades play too, which is neat.”