Basketball Wall Street USA: “Always Reach For New Heights”

Basketball Wall Street:”Always Reach For New Heights”

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The New Heights Youth, Inc. is a non-profit sports-based youth-development and educational organization based out of the New York City area. Girls Basketball Program Coordinator Mervin “Rock” Rosa and the New Heights name has been a staple in the grassroots community providing girls and boys an athletic and academic platform for inner city youth to become successful adults in society. “In regards to the New Heights program, the goal is to ensure that all 200+ student-athletes (female and male)are continuing to excel in the classroom and are on tract to matriculate to college as student-athletes. That includes SAT/ACT prep and, if necessary tutoring, report card tracking and any other services they need. We also must make sure our high school student-athletes what is required by the NCAA Eligibility Center in order to eventually qualify for a D1 or D2 program if they are fortunate enough to receive a scholarship offer.” says Rosa who works diligently to put forth a sensibility of class and hardwork throughout the New Heights organization. “On the court,we want to continue our tradition of successfully training and developing our student-athletes to become the best players they can be. We will continue to work very hard in the gym to develop young talent and make sure they receive maximum exposure on the travel circuit. In addition we are excited to announce the return of Jessica Villaplana, who founded the New Heights program 12 years ago. She and several talented coaches and players will be rejoining New Heights and we are excited about the depth of our coaching staff and upcoming season.”

Some of the top prospects in the New Heights program are:

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Kaelynn Satterfield 6’0″ So/ Christ The King-(NY)
Emily Engstler 6’3″ Jr/ St Francis Prep-(NY)
Cavina Rickards 5’9″ So/ Christ The King-(NY)
Laysha Delossantos 5’4″ So/ Bishop Loughlin-(NY)
Kateri Poole 5’8″ Fr/ Monsignor Scanlan-(NY)
Janaysia Brown 6’2″ Fr/ Peddie School-(NJ)
Kayla Johnson 6’2″ Fr/ South Shore-(NY)
Alana Jones 5’8″ Fr/ Rye Country Day-(NY)

The New Heights 17U team will be coached by Rock Rosa and assisted by Marque Poole and LiEsha Garcia. Some of the other coaches added to the program are: Ron Kelly Nazareth-(Brooklyn, NY)  Anwar Gladden (South Shore, NY)  and Joe Deluca (Christ The King, NY)

With the cultivation of women’s grassroots basketball and club teams across the country, Rosa does not subscribe to the fact that an organization needs a particular sponsorship to be successful. “At New Heights we currently have 55 female alums playing college basketball, eight playing professionally and over 100 successful career women. All of them have succeeded without a sponsorship. what makes a program is a dedicated staff, players and their families. Many of our girls start with New Heights in middle school and graduate as part of the program. Since 2005 we have a 100% high school graduation rate, 98% college matriculation rate AND a 75% college graduation rate. That is due to the hard work of our coaches and academic staff and a family atmosphere that is fostered by our student-athletes. One example is Kiah Gillespie, currently a sophomore at the University of Maryland. Kiah was recruited by every program in the northeast and decided to stick with New Heights and she went on to become a McDonald’s All-American in the process. It is sad to see other programs lie to kids and families about their programs being “sponsored” or playing on a particular “circuit” to try to recruit them. Girls basketball is very different than boys, there are no huge sponsorships being given out to girls programs right now. Hopefully that will change in the near future but for now programs are only using it for marketing and recruiting. As for New Heights, we have a great travel schedule and four very competitive teams that are ready to perform at a high level.” Look for New Heights to continue their tradition of developing prospects into collegiate students, professional athletes and working professionals in the real world, always reach for New Heights.

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