Local Celebs Hoop It Up For A Good Cause

The Gulfport Hoopsters looked like they came ready to play ball, starting with showing off their skills under the hoop, all the way down to Brad Kessie's socks.

One goal - to win against the world renowned Harlem Wizards.

The second and most important goal - to make sure children like 10 year old Deauntria Stubbs has a positive place to go after school.

"We play games, we learn more stuff, we split up into different classes, and they teach us about a lot of stuff that we need to learn about like strangers," said Stubbs.

She's talking about her after school program sponsored by the Gulfport Police Department's police athletic league, which organized Saturday's basketball fundraiser.

"We provide alternative sporting events across this city for children. We have our after school programs, we have our summer programs, we sponsor different types of leagues, and what this money does is it helps us to provide those programs. Without these people coming out here tonight and without the wizards coming in here to help us raise this money, these programs that every child in the city of Gulfport is able to participate in at no cost..we wouldn't be able to do it," said Commander Alfred Sexton.

Deauntria's mother, Jeheria, came out to support the fundraiser because she appreciates how these programs help to positively influence her daughter.

"It gives me a peace of mind. Every day after school when my kids are at home, I'm still at work. But I know she's in the Junior Explorers, so I know from 3:30 to 4:30, two days a week, she's still at school for after school extra curriculums," said Stubbs.

This was the second year for the fundraiser game.

Last year, it raised about 5-thousand dollars, but looking at Saturday's turnout, this year will be even greater.

Despite the blood, sweat and tears by the Gulfport Hoopsters, the team lost to the Wizards 76 to 71.