After 22 Years, Women’s Basketball League Taking Off Again

The Bulldogs' Joy Victor drives past the Eagles' Tifhany Jennings under the basket during Saturday's game.

The Bulldogs’ Joy Victor drives past the Eagles’ Tifhany Jennings under the basket during Saturday’s game.

By Dean “The Sportsman” Greenaway

There was a semblance of a Women’s Basketball League in the early 90s’ but, it fizzled as there was no girls basketball school program in place, feeding into the BVI Basketball Federation League.

However, after fielding a women’s team in the CBC Championships for the first time in its history a year ago, a women’s league is underway with three teams as more women interested and playing the game at the Primary and High School levels.

The rosters—consisting of past, current and future players, range in age from their teens to 52 and include two referees—one of whom is playing on a team with her daughter.

On Saturday, the Bulldogs used 13 points from captain Khadejah Anthony and 10 from Dominique Wattley to claw the Eagles, 55-27, for their second victory of the season after holding off the Rams, 47-38 in their opener.

“As the coach would say, it was our game to win and we had to take advantage,” Bulldogs small forward Anthony said. “We made a few mistakes here and there but we came out playing like a team and that’s what he likes to see. I’m happy with that if he’s happy with that.”

At 52, referee Gertrude Thomas is the league’s oldest player on the Eagles team with her daughter Joi-Ann Thomas and said its an opportunity to ‘live basketball all over again.’ “Playing with the young girls, I’m just there to give them a little guidance,” said Thomas who had team high equaling nine points with Tifhany Jennings and also pulled 12 rebounds. “It’s rewarding having my daughter playing along side me now. I can only teach her what I know. Being on the court with all the other girls is a teaching opportunity as I go along. The Bulldogs has the better core of players in the whole league. When we get other players—and practices which we haven’t had—we’ll be alright.”

Anthony described getting the opportunity to play as ‘amazing.’ “I’m glad we have the three teams that came out,” she said. “I love the sport and I know we all love the sport and we’re just out here having fun. I’m glad to see that the fans came out. We love it.”

Thomas recalled playing in the league in the early 90s. “Seeing it renewed after 21-22 years, is something nice to see,” she said.

Defending champions Legs had a 16 points 86-70 victory over All Ah We. Dion Blyden was the leading scorer with 26 points. Devon Peltier had 21 points to lead All Ah We.

Nigel Carey recorded a game high 30 points and 13 rebounds but it wasn’t enough to help Zero Tolerance as they fell to the East, 90-74. Shaheed Collins paced the East with 29 points.

The Kings used Kellvin Solomon’s 26 points and 11 rebounds double double to beat the Skulls, 80-73. Jehmaery Benjamin led the Skulls’ scores with 15 points.

In Jr. Division play, Jachoy Walwyn led six players in double figures with 18 points as And One crushed Young Starz—who had no players scoring in double figures—105-34.

Another Level got 22 points from Deangelo Sampson during a 90-59 triumph over the Celtics.