A group of Caribou boys making lifetime memories

A group of 6th grade boys in Caribou are spending the week preparing for a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity playing a game they love. This weekend basketball teams featuring athletes from grade 6 will compete in the New England Basketball Championship, and the team representing Maine will be traveling from Aroostook County.

The grade 6 travel team that was put together in Caribou is getting a taste of hardwood success early in their playing careers. According to their coaches, this group has come together quickly and there is reason to believe that this only the beginning for these ballers.

The Golden ticket
The Golden ticket
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The Golden Ticket

Caribou became eligible for the New England championships after running through the qualifier, the Waterville Town Team Championship on the final weekend of February. The team from Caribou ran through pool play with a perfect record, and put them into the Gold Division during tournament play on the final day. A daunting task to many, was a walk in the park for the boys from Caribou as they defeated teams from Hall-Dale and Bangor on their way to the finals. Caribou defeated the team from York in the title game, punching their "Golden Ticket” to this weekend's New England Basketball Championships.

Meet the team

The New England championships will be played in Rhode Island featuring teams from Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Vermont, and of course, Maine. Friday and Sturdy will consist of pool play and then the teams will be seeded for one-and-done tournament play. Making up the team from Caribou are Brayden Amero, Kooper Bell, Camden Codrey, Hayden Holabird, Tristen Merchant, Declan Miller, Carter St. Pierre, and Chandler St. Peter. They are coached by Josh Bell, Greg Miller, and Griffin St. Peter. 

Caribou Grade 6 Travel Team headed for the New England Basketball championships
Caribou Grade 6 Travel Team headed for the New England Basketball championships
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The local community has stepped up in support

Achieving this level of play means these boys and their families will be travelling and staying 4 nights in hotels, a cost that is out-of-pocket of the families. However, coach Josh Bell said "the community has stepped up big time to support this group.” Bell said that several local businesses have sponsored the team to assist with travel and hotel costs, as well as uniforms for the players. As Bell said “when you play well, you have to look good!” A local business has also donated gas cards to parents that will be traveling to Rhode Island this weekend.

These boys are putting the work in and fundraising

The boys aren't just waiting for donations, they have done some of the work raising funds themselves. Last weekend the team woke up early held a bottle drive in Caribou. After the bottle drive the team then hit the gym for some practice. If you are wanting to follow this team over the weekend you can stream the tournament at BallerTv.com, although there is a subscription cost. You might be able to find a parent or two streaming the games through their own Facebook accounts. It is also not too late for any sponsors to help support this team; you can reach coach Bell at 207-551-1331.

Caribou travel team held a bottle drive to raise funds for a trip to New England Basketball Championships
Caribou travel team held a bottle drive to raise funds for a trip to New England Basketball Championships
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Let's go!! 

We want to wish the Caribou travel team the best of luck as they head to the New England Basketball Championships this weekend! No matter what happens this weekend, you have already achieved a major accomplishment you should be proud of, and you have made life long memories. Show em’ what you got, boys!

High School Basketball Tournament Sights 2-19-22

Images from the Saturday slate of games at the Cross Insurance Center in Bangor