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Local earns spot in event

January 19, 2011

Area athlete shows off his skills at basketball competition: Local Resident Nicholas Ryan Black made 20 of 25 free-throw attempts to win his age group at the Burbank Elks Lodge No. 1497 Hoop Shoot competition.

The 9-year-old athlete was awarded a trophy and had to wait until neighboring jurisdictions completed their competitions to see if the McKinley Elementary Student would be moving on. Black was informed that he will be advancing, as he will take part in the Metropolitan District Hoop Shoot, to be held at 9 a.m. Saturday at Lawrence Middle School in Chatsworth.

He is the only local competitor from Burbank moving on.

Born and raised in Orlando, Black moved to Burbank four years ago. Along with basketball, he has received awards in golf, baseball and chess. However, his favorite sport is basketball.

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The local Hoop Shoot is part of a national competition that starts with local events. The program offers kids 8-13 the opportunity for skill development, social relationships and athletic competition. Winners from the district contests move on to the state and then western region competition, with the winners advancing to the national final April 30 in Springfield, Mass.

Names of the national winners will be inscribed on the Elks National Hoop Shoot plaque on permanent display in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield.

Last year, Burbank resident Fabiana Jimenez won four straight competitions to earn a place in the finals.

Jeff Tully

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