The games may have been half-court, but the action was full bore at the 2019 Mother Lode Madness 3-on-3 Basketball Tournament.
On Sunday at Calaveras High School, more than 100 boys and girls ranging from third graders to 12th graders laced up their basketball shoes to hoop it up in a fun and competitive environment that produced no shortage of exciting moments.
This year’s installment of the annual Mother Lode Madness 3-on-3 Tournament featured 30 teams competing in six divisions separated by grade level. The majority of teams and players came from all across the Mother Lode League area of Amador, Calaveras and Tuolumne counties, but some others traveled even further to participate.
Among the team names registered for this year’s tournament were some clever gems like Hoops I Did It Again, Lady Layups, Senioritas (a team made up of all high school seniors), Carrot Eaters and one that only fans of the movie “Step Brothers” would truly appreciate, Prestige Worldwide. There were also a handful of team names paying homage to the all-mighty 3-point shot, including Droppin’ Treys, Tres Ballers and Three’s Company.
The format for all games followed traditional half-court pick-up ball rules – clear all change of possessions past the 3-point line, check-in all dead balls, scoring by 1s and 2s – with each game ending when one team reached a predetermined point value (point values varied based on division) or when time expired, whichever came first.
Perhaps the most exciting game on a day that featured more than 60 total games and produced many tense moments came in the championship round of the Elementary Girls Division (for players up to sixth grade). The showdown between the Bulldogs of Valley Springs and the Future Ballers from the Murphys area was all tied up when time expired, sending the game into sudden death overtime. Both teams had a couple of shots at the winning basket that had fans coming out of their seats before Bailey Eltringham of the Future Ballers converted a mid-range jumper to seal the victory and the Elementary Girls Division championship. Eltringham was joined on the Future Ballers by Lexie McDaniel and Maddie Kane.
The Elementary Girls Division finals was one of three games in the playoff round of the tournament that went to sudden death overtime on the day.
In other divisions, the Motherlode Miners from Amador County defeated Droppin’ Treys, also from the Murphys area, in the finals of the Youth Boys Division (up to fourth grade). Representing the Miners were Carson Gilliam, Owen Holly and Jordan Hulsebosch.
In the Middle School Boys Division, the Bret Harte Ballers (Ryan McDaniel, Ryder Foust, Noah Wright and Wyatt Tiscornia) defeated Three’s Company in the finals.
In the Middle School Girls Division, the Mudd Kittens of Avery (Sophie Bouma, Chase Silva and Makenna Tutthill) defeated the Amador County Ballers in the championship round.
In the High School Boys Division, The Crew (Conor Arnold, Logan Sewell, Devon Dye and Shawn Mantz) survived a sudden-death battle in the semifinals and defeated Prestige Worldwide in the championship game.
In the High School Girls Division, Little League (Madison Clark, Bailie Clark and Brooke Nordahl) defeated Three Lady Ballers in the finals.
The next Mother Lode Madness 3-on-3 Basketball Tournament will be held in the spring at Calaveras High School. For more information, email email@example.com.