Family and friends were on hand at the Golden Grove Adult Correctional Facility on Saturday to cheer on their favorite teams and loved ones as the inmates held their third annual basketball tournament. Inmate Roberto “Robbie” Smalls envisioned the tournament as a means of building a unified, violence-free community amongst the inmate population.
Smalls coordinated the event with fellow inmate Johnnie Kidd, and they invited the Runners basketball team from St. Thomas and St. Croix’s perennial champions, the Hoyas, to participate in this year’s tournament.
The inmates were well represented by their Real G’s basketball team and gave the visitors all they could handle and then some.
Runners 41, Real G’s 32
The Real G’s took on the Runners in the opening contest and were overpowered, 41-32. The Runners were led by Aubrey Daniel with 17 points and nine rebounds. Jahbari Brown netted six points, grabbed 12 rebounds and swatted away six shots, and Terrance Bailey chipped in with seven points for the winners.
The G-team was led by Tedroy Lake with 14 points and eight boards, and Smalls finished with nine points and eight boards.
Real G’s 54, Hoyas 52
The Real G’s turned in a great performance against St. Croix basketball powerhouse, the Hoyas, in game two and came away with a hard fought 54-52 victory to the delight of family, friends and fellow inmates.
Lake again led the way for the inmates, as he tallied a game-high 17 points to go with 10 rebounds. He got good support from Bailey, who finished with seven points, and Smalls, who had six points and seven rebounds.
The shorthanded Hoyas were led by Devonte Pryce with 13 points and six rebounds. Warren Christian and Ras Brooks both finished with 13 points.
The games were great but it was the apparent bonding of the many inmates that was most rewarding. This familiarity that the day created among inmates can only, ultimately, make Golden Grove a more peaceful institution.