by Paula M. Riley

It’s that time of year again. “March Madness,” the name for the NCAA college basketball championship, is upon us. College women hoopsters have already begun their journey on the “Road to the Final Four,” and the men’s teams begin this weekend with conference tournaments.

Chestnut Hill is hosting its own version of March Madness, and everyone is invited to participate. On Saturday, March 23, at Springside Chestnut Hill Academy, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., boys and girls, ages 6-18, and adults are invited to the first CHCA Hoops Madness. This is a fun morning of basketball with a 3-on-3 tournament and shooting competitions.

“The Chestnut Hill Community Association (CHCA) is excited to host a kid-centric, family focused event,” said Brien Tilley, CHCA president.

Tilley is quick to point out that CHCA is not planning this exciting event alone. Matt Paul Basketball is a huge supporter and is collaborating with Tilley on all aspects of the event. Many local organizations have agreed to sponsor CHCA Hoops Madness, including Chestnut Hill Hospital, Chestnut Hill Sports, Cosimo’s Pizza, McNally’s Tavern and Temple Orthopedic Surgery & Sports Medicine at Chestnut Hill Hospital.

“This is a great collaboration that began with a discussion in the coffee shop,” said Matt Paul. “We at Matt Paul Basketball are thrilled to partner with CHCA to provide an outstanding experience. We hope everyone comes out to play and that the event brings all corners of the community together.”

Participating children and adults can register as a team of four players (three players with one substitute) or they will be assigned a team on the day of the tournament. Each team will play a minimum of two half-court games and brackets will be based on age groupings. In addition to the 3-on-3 tournament, everyone is invited to the 3-point and foul-shooting competitions and will receive an official CHCA Hoops Madness 2013 tee shirt.

This tourney welcomes players of all levels, and Tilley encourages everyone to give it a try. As Matt Paul likes to say, “You miss 100 percent of the shots you don’t take.”

There will be plenty of shots taken on the 23rd. The SCH Woodward and Kingsley Gyms host multiple courts, so throughout the event, there will be six games going on at once. When not engaged in tournament games, participants are invited to warm up with Matt Paul Basketball coaches and enter the shooting competitions.

“Between the games, the shooting competition, and the concessions, we think the kids are going to just love this,” Tilley said. “we hope that offering a sporting event in such a fun atmosphere will really bring the community together.”

His excitement for the day is obvious when he discusses the plans. He has high hopes that participants from the region’s many elementary and secondary schools come out and play together.

Chestnut Hill Community Manager Celeste Hardester shares his enthusiasm.

“With Brien Tilley and Matt Paul leading the action,” she added, “it’s going to be a way-fun tournament!”

Enzo Mandarano, owner of Cosimos, echos her sentiment.

“Cosimo’s is happy to help support events for the kids of Chestnut Hill,” he said. “We love Brien and Matt and know they will do a great job with the Hoops Madness.”

Register for CHCA Hoops Madness at The price for children 18 and under is $15; for adult CHCA Members,$20, and for non-members, $25.

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