Twenty-six area athletes will take to the basketball court as members of the X-PRESS girls 17-under and 15-under teams heading to the Youth Basketball of America National Championships this week in Alexandria, Va.
The tournament's opening ceremonies were held Saturday at West Potomac High School. Both X-PRESS teams open play today.
The tournaments - featuring 10 17-under teams and 14 15-under teams - are comprised of squads which won Youth Basketball of America state championships. Teams from as far away as Florida, Georgia, Louisiana and Maine will participate.
"These are all teams that are champions in their state, so the competition will be stiff," said Earl Redden, the coach of the X-PRESS 17-under team and the director of operations for the Tri-State Youth Athletic Association, an organization formed two years ago which serves as the base for the X-PRESS. "For the girls to get this opportunity, they wouldn't get it any other way."