The BBBL acronym on the front of game jerseys for the over-40 Baby Boomers Basketball League could easily add another B, for bonding. Since November, the newly renovated gym at the Southwest Community Center has served as Reunion Hall for residents, predominantly from the communities of color, who hung out with or competed against each other on playgrounds or high school courts back in the day. Now, however, given work and family requisites, many probably only see each other Sundays at the BBBL.
This season play has been competitive and amicable, with enough blowouts to herald who would have the power for the championship play-offs, actually making filling in the two teams in the final bracket a relatively safe prediction. Indeed, the league's top two finishers, Syracuse O' Gees and Ballard Construction, both 13-1, after first round tournament byes, found themselves slated last Sunday against the two with the next best records, Next Level and B&B Lounge, both 9-5. Naturally, with coin flips and selection criteria, not everyone was happy.
"The Green team got robbed," called out A. Murphy, whose International finished as one of three teams at 4-10 hoping for the sixth tourney birth in the eight team league. "Those other two split, and what with one swept the other . . . we should have been in the play-offs." The lament fell on few ears, as the BBBL's semi-final Sunday started way slow. So slow, that when the City Eagle coverage team arrived less than an hour before tip-off, the front and back doors at SWCC were locked, both lobbies silently dark.
The coverage team had left for the assignment at NCAA halftime with SU up relatively comfortable at 41-32. After a patient wait at the SWCC front door, and a brisk block's walk to the convenience store for coffee, it began to sink in. Priorities. A second visit to the back door found a way in and an ironic twist. The SWCC television set was strangely unresponsive, and early arrivals were keeping in touch with the SU game through a running report on a cell phone.