VILLA, Philadelphia’s leading urban retailer, and NIKE will host the 3rd Annual Holiday Classic, Sunday, January 3, 2010, noon-8PM at St. Joseph’s University – showcasing 8 of the top high school basketball teams out of New York and Pennsylvania. The Holiday Classic features the likes of Bishop Loughlin (Brooklyn, NY) Power Forward and new Villanova recruit Jayvaughn Pinkston, Strawberry Mansion’s Guards Khyree Wooten and D.J. Newbill, Girard College’s Guard Torrell Candelaria, and University of Pittsburgh recruit, Guard John Johnson; Friends’ Central’s Forward Amile Jefferson (Top 10 Nationally ranked Sophomore) and Guard Devin Coleman; Harrisburg’s Bryan Taylor; North Catholic’s Guard Mike Terry; and Phelp’s Damien Williams, Tyree Harris, and Jahmad Saleem.
VILLA’s Holiday Classic was started as a way to promote not just fantastic basketball playing, but to showcase young people who are doing positive things. The Holiday Classic provides an opportunity for these players to connect with other young people in the community, share their personal stories, and offer encouragement – showing them what happens when you choose to excel. What’s more, all funds from the Holiday Classic go to building a new VILLA Teen Center – an educational hub exposing teens to cultural, academic, college and career preparatory programs, and multicultural experiences, all with the purpose of developing young leaders and bridging the gaps in education and economic development in urban neighborhoods.
This year’s Holiday Classic is the first time #1 rated NYC high school basketball player Pinkston plays in a Philadelphia tournament of this sort. Match-ups include: Nationally ranked Friends’ Central (Philadelphia, Pa) vs. Phelps (Malvern, Pa); PA Boys A State Champions Girard College (Philadelphia, Pa) vs. Harrisburg (Harrisburg, Pa); PA Boys AA State Champions Imhotep Charter High School (Philadelphia, Pa) vs. Bishop Loughlin (Brooklyn, NY); and North Catholic (Philadelphia, Pa) vs. Strawberry Mansion (Philadelphia, Pa).