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Olympian helps kids with hoop dreams

By Trevor Terfloth
Chatham Daily News
July 26, 2013

One of the top basketball players in the country took to the court Friday to help kids make the most of their abilities and pursue their dreams.

Canadian national team member and Olympian Miranda Ayim was at John McGregor Secondary School for the Maple City Hoops camp.

The Chatham-born, London-raised forward assisted with drills and spoke to the 72 participants about her experiences.

“It’s always exciting helping out local camps,” she told The Chatham Daily News.

She was also happy to return the favour, saying that she received much support from the camp while playing in the 2012 Olympics in London, England.

Ayim, 25, who just returned from China, said 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil is on her radar.

“That’s the plan right now. I think I can make it three more years,” she said.

At the end of the summer, the team will be in Mexico for a tournament to qualify for the world championships.

Ayim attended Pepperdine University in California and believes young people need to consider their future beyond basketball.

“For me, it was about pursuing my education first and getting a scholarship to a good university where I could complete my degree,” she said. “You never know how your body is going to hold up.”

Maple City Baptist Church sponsored the week-long, faith-based camp, which instills not only basketball skills but promotes character development.

Organizer John Corrente, who also coaches the Chatham-Kent Golden Hawks, said he appreciated Ayim for taking the time to pass on her knowledge.

He said he coached against her when she was a junior in high school, noting that while she was a solid player then, she improved even more while at university.

“It’s inspirational for the kids to have her here … to see someone at that level give them a goal,” he said.

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