In winter of 2017, the MPYBL decided to take some of our more skilled players out of the in-house league and create a travel team to compete in the very competitive Fairfax County Youth Basketball League. The FCYBL is a not-for-profit organization comprised of 29 registered member youth clubs and recreation centers. This league exists to enable the youth of its member organizations to compete, learn, grow, and develop basketball skills while playing with their neighborhood teams.
Initially we fielded two teams in the Boys 5th and 8th grade divisions. That season, we showed that there are great basketball players from the Manassas area! Our 5th grade team started well with an overall record of 3-0, but then lost the next 10 games to finish 3-10 on the season. This was a learning experience both for the players and for us as coaches. Our 8th grade team finished in the top two of their division and lost in the championship game. Not bad for two first year teams with no prior knowledge or experience with the FCYBL!
The following year, we again fielded two teams, Boys 5th and 7th grade. The turnout for tryouts increased dramatically that season as more people became aware of our teams and wanted to participate. This was very exciting to witness as the League Director. The hard work put we in behind the scenes to get this program up and running was finally paying off.
In one of our best seasons to date, both teams finished at the top of their respective divisions with the 5th grade team winning the season title and our 5th grade coach and his son winning Coach of the Year and Player of the Year! Additionally, both teams made it to the championship games in their divisions. Though we came up short in both championship games finishing as the runner-ups, I couldn’t have been more proud to see the kids from our house league come together to form an elite travel team and represent the City of Manassas Park all over Fairfax County and Loudoun County. The players truly put their heart and soul into the season and our coaches provided them with the tools for success both on the court and off. Kudos to them all!
As we prepare for another season, we have now increased our team totals to four teams and our tryouts drew our largest turnout thus far. All four teams are poised to represent the City of Manassas Park in the FCYBL this season. If you would like to support and cheer on our teams, stop by the Community Center on any Saturday afternoon in December until February and you will get to see the City of Manassas Elite Travel team in action!
Mike Arrington is the Recreation Specialist for Athletics for the City of Manassas Park, Department of Parks and Recreation. He can be reached at (703) 335-8872 or via email at M.Arrington@ManassasParkVA.gov.