Coach Jonquin McKinney and his team of 11 girls traveled to North Augusta, South Carolina on May 1-2 to participate in the KB SPORTS 13th Annual Ballers Invitational. ATAP Elite competed as one of 10 teams in the 9th/10th grade girls division, and the local squad ended the tournament as runner-up, bringing home a second place trophy for their efforts.
In their first game, ATAP Elite took on Augusta Hoops GA Sting and won 53-20. Their second game matched them up against Air Ballers Elite, and ATAP came away with a 49-12 win in that contest. Improving to 3-0, ATAP defeated Georgia Dream Team (Blue) 48-21 in the Final Four to move on to the title game.
Championship Sunday pitted ATAP Elite against the Georgia Lady C.A.V.S., who handed the Swainsboro-based team its only loss throughout the tournament. The final score was 48-21.
McKinney says despite falling in the championship, the girls played extremely well. Everyone, he added, did their part.
“The floor general, Serah Kelly, controlled all four games pretty well. Tanyia Williams and Khaliya Walker were finding one another extremely easy, Brylie Ray hit some huge 3s, and Jamia Smith was like a gnat on defense. Makayla Tanner, Brenda Tanner, and Hannah Howard played some suffocating defense, too,” McKinney commented. “Everyone was ready when their number was called. The Lady Cavs played a great game and never took their foot off the gas.”
ATAP will play again sometime in July.
In closing, McKinney says these ladies will make a lot of noise next season as long as they stay healthy. The team’s full roster is as follows: Taniya Williams, Hannah Howard, Tonia Ricks, Serah Kelly, and Jamia Smith, all of Swainsboro; Bree Wimberly of David Emanuel Academy; Makayla Tanner and Brenda Tanner, both of East Laurens; Khaliya Walker of Vidalia; and Kaley Cardell and Brylie Ray, both of Bulloch Academy.