Love Ballin Rising Stars Weekend 2015 Preview

By David Cordova

In the state of New Jersey, there is a hotbed of talent. There are plenty of talented ballplayers coming out of North & South Jersey. One of the breeding grounds of talent in the Garden State is in Central New Jersey.

The Love Ballin Athletics organization was started by Tyreek McNear and Bilal Benjamin in 2012 in Ewing, NJ as a way to help kids develop their basketball skills through mentoring, training, coaching, camps and basketball clinics.

This year’s event will feature two girls games on Friday, June 5th at the Ewing Senior Community Center in Ewing, followed by two boys games that will be played on Saturday, June 6th at Life Center Academy in Burlington, NJ.

8th Grade Game Rosters

Team Dedication

Aasim Richards

Fatayn Wesley

Craig Wrenn

Wesley Leggett

Gabriel Johnson

Delano Whitfield

Stephen Payne

Jack Cavanaugh

Bryce Spriggs

David Johnson

Team Loyalty

Mikeal Jones

Troy McGreggor

Noah Oliver

Aquil Stewart

Lou Wild

Justin Galea

Joshua Antoine

Amin Bryant

Jamari Simmons

Nicholas Boyd

Boys High School All-Star Game

Team Legacy

Trevon Duval, St. Benedict’s Prep, Class of 2017

Alex Morrow, DeMatha Catholic (MD), Class of 2017

Ja’Quaye James, Teaneck, Class of 2018

Ryan Conde, Ewing, Class of 2018

Shemar Robinson, Lawrence, Class of 2018

Yeshua Powe, Life Center Academy, Class of 2018

Pat Higgins, Class of 2018

Ronald Gaskins, Medford Tech, Class of 2017

Jordan Livingston, Class of 2018

Andrew Ortiz, Phillips Academy (NH), Class of 2018

Tyree Pickron, Archbishop Wood (PA), Class of 2018

Team Destiny

Myles Mitchell-White, Lawrence, Class of 2017

David Kachelries, Emmaus (PA), Class of 2017

Markquis Nowell, St. Anthony, Class of 2018

Jamal Anderson, Class of 2018

Roderique Massenat, Roselle Catholic, Class of 2018

Richard Jones, Class of 2018

Aziz Parker, Medford Tech, Class of 2017

David Coit, Northern Burlington, Class of 2018

Angel Rivera, Trenton, Class of 2018

Girls High School All-Star Game

Team Loyalty

Denia Campbell, Solebury (PA), Class of 2017

Mya Grimes, Ewing (NJ), Class of 2018

Maria DeVincenzo, Trenton Catholic (NJ), Class of 2018

Kiyla Peterson, Ewing (NJ), Class of 2018

Leah Johnson, Class of 2019

Ryan Robinson, Class of 2018

Jaycee Lowe, Class of 2019

Hailey Jantorno, Notre Dame (NJ), Class of 2018

Natalie Stralkus, Peddie (NJ), Class of 2018

Team Dedication

Kaiya Burnett, Notre Dame (NJ), Class of 2018

Ayanna Johnson, Pennington (NJ), Class of 2018

Ce’Nia Bowser, Trenton Catholic (NJ), Class of 2017

Jalynn Spaulding, Lawrence (NJ), Class of 2018

Myasia Jackson, Class of 2019

Imani Lewis, Trenton Catholic (NJ), Class of 2018

Kaela Reed, Trenton Catholic (NJ), Class of 2018

Maylissa Clark, Ewing (NJ), Class of 2017

Tyasia Lewis-El, Trenton Catholic (NJ), Class of 2017

Here’s our Q & A with Love Ballin co-founder Bilal Benjamin:

How did the Love Ballin’ program come about?

We always wanted to start our own business but didn’t know what. We didn’t want to just do a clothing line, so while we were away at college we brainstormed different entrepeneurial ways to go about it. The things we factored in were that it had to be something we loved that can help others. Then we came up with starting an organization, not just camps and clinics but apparel, showcases, one on one training and more. We wanted to differentiate ourselves from others. Most basketball clubs/organizations focus on one gender.

What is the primary motive of the program?

We’re here to foster leadership, social stability and love for the game. The Love Ballin philosophy centers on you and your development as a person and as a baller. The philosophy, developed, focuses on a comprehensive approach to each student, of any age, male or female, and at any skill level. The philosophy requires you to be a person of good moral and ethical character, be a baller with strong passion as well a a tough mind and sound body. To be a servant and steward to others, on & off the court.

What are the notable players that you have trained?

Frantz Massenat (Trenton Catholic Academy, Drexel University. Pro ball in Germany)

LaKeisha Sutton (Trenton Catholic Academy, University of South Carolina, Pro ball in Germany)

MyNeshia McKenzie (Rider University, Pro ball in Portugal)

Davon Reed (University of Miami)

Carlton Allen (Manhattan College)

Eli Cain (St. Benedict’s Prep, DePaul University commit)

Dennis Tunstall (Life Center Academy, Towson University commit)

Myles Powell (Trenton Catholic Academy, Playaz Basketball Club)

Shaquan Worthy (Trenton Central High School, New Jersey City University)

Roderique Massenat (Roselle Catholic High School)

Justin Galea (Playaz Basketball Club)

Myles Mitchell-White (Lawrence High School, SportsU)

Denia Campbell (Solebury School)

Chase Lewis (Princeton Day School)

Shanera Hampton (Nottingham High School)

Craig Wrenn (Fisher Middle School, New Jersey Warriors)

Jada Atchison (Burlington City High School)

Kaison Randolph (Philadelphia University)

Kessly Fellzor (Highstown High School)

Ryan Conde (Ewing High School)

Jordan Livingston (Ewing High School)

Richard Jones (Born To Make It)

Paul Jones (Centenary College)

Mateo Walker (Ewing High School)

Where do you see the program going in the future?

I see it being national. Expanding our game national. Eventually moving Love Ballin’ to the West Coast.

What can we expect to see for Love Ballin’ Weekend?

In our 2nd annual Love Ballin Rising Stars Weekend, you can expect to see some of the best young talent in the area. Kids with maximum exposure already and kids with none, but whom also can play at any level, but lack exposure. You can  expect to see not only great basketball, but some awesome music by Jaryd Lewis, who will be performing at halftime of the boys high school game. All of our new apparel will be on display. We would also like to thank our sponsors, Chick-Fil-A & Body Armor SuperDrink. Overall, the atmosphere will be incredible. This is a weekend you don’t want to miss. Last year, the girls game was better than the boys game. So don’t downplay Friday night’s game because the ladies can ball too.

Here’s footage from last year’s game:

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