New Castle News


June 2, 2012

Hoop Dream: Union grad organizes tourney to restore court

NEW CASTLE — Jordon Rooney just wanted some new hoops.

At this rate, he’s going to be contributing much more to the Union Township community.

Rooney, a 2008 Union High graduate, grew up playing basketball on the outdoor court at Scotland Meadows Park. Through the years, he witnessed its condition worsen.

So, he decided to do something to raise funds to help restore it — organize a 3-on-3 basketball tournament at the same location.

Now in its third year, the Pizza Joe’s Community Pride 3-on-3 Basketball Tournament has raised approximately $4,000 for upgrades of the facility. This year’s event is slated for June 16. Registration is at 11 a.m. and games begin at noon and run into the night.

“One big thing about this, it’s giving something for Union to take pride in. No one has a court like this. It’s the only one around with lights, too,” Rooney said. “I take pride in where I am from. It feels great for people to have something to take pride in as well.”

Rooney, who graduated from Westminster last month, played football, basketball and baseball at Union. He played football during his four years at Westminster, but took time out to help coach football and basketball at Union, too. He remains committed to helping out the community.

“Doing this is pretty difficult,” he said. “I’d go to class and then rush back and try to meet with a business to try to get a sponsorship. What’s really helped out is being on Facebook, talking to many people about this. It’s enabled me to get a lot of people involved. I am able to network and talk to these people. I really take pride in making this a big event.”

In addition to a Facebook event page, a website exists ( and Rooney spends time making personal visits to area basketball courts to help spread the word.

It’s a winning formula. The event has grown and attracted some of the top basketball players — and athletes — from Lawrence and Beaver counties, as well as Ohio and the Pittsburgh area, to compete in the various age groups.

“There are not really many tournaments around like this,” Rooney said. “It’s a pretty cool environment and shows how different streetball is from organized basketball.”

Last year’s event drew 45 teams from mainly western Pa. and eastern Ohio. One of the highlights of the day is a slam dunk competition.

“I didn’t think it’d get this big. I didn’t have any expectations; I just wanted to see if we could get some new hoops,” Rooney said. “Now, it’s turned into something people are looking forward to and drawing some of the best talent around. People have told me they’ve been practicing for a while for this.”

Text Only | Photo Reprints
  • Wheaton.jpg Steelers' Wheaton eyeing chance after tough rookie year

    Markus Wheaton realizes the pressure is there, but he doesn’t mind.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • Polanco.jpg Harrison’s four hits leads Pirates past Rockies, 7-5

    Josh Harrison had four hits, including a tiebreaking homer, to help the Pittsburgh Pirates beat the Colorado Rockies 7-5 on Sunday. Gregory Polanco and Travis Snider also went deep for the Pirates, who avoided being swept in Colorado for the second straight season.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • Pirates Rockies Baseb_Fusc.jpg Anderson leads Rockies over Pirates 8-1

    Brett Anderson pitched effectively into the seventh inning for his first win in more than a year and the Colorado Rockies beat the Pittsburgh Pirates 8-1 on Friday night.


    July 26, 2014 1 Photo

  • MANGINO.jpg Mangino finding new home at Iowa State

     The first time Iowa State defensive end Cory Morrissey saw Mark Mangino, the former Kansas coach and current ISU offensive coordinator stopped him in his tracks.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Pirates.jpg Pirates jump on Haren early, top Dodgers 6-1

    Josh Harrison had two hits with two RBIs and the Pittsburgh Pirates jumped on Dan Haren early in a 6-1 win over the Los Angeles Dodgers on Wednesday night.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Aloi.jpg Aloi's PIAA eligibility hearing postponed

    The wait continues for Nick Aloi. Aloi, who transferred from Ellwood City Lincoln High to Lincoln Park Performing Arts Charter School on Jan. 21, still does not know if he will get to play a full season for the Leopards’ basketball team

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Pirates.jpg Polanco, Walker lift Pirates over Dodgers 12-7

    Gregory Polanco broke out of a slump with a solo home run and a tiebreaking two-run single, lifting the Pittsburgh Pirates to a 12-7 victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers on Tuesday night.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • ManzielJersey.jpg Manziel scores as NFL’s top-selling jersey

    Second on Cleveland’s depth chart, Johnny Manziel already tops one NFL list.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Huston.jpg Greg Huston: Pedro, Steelers' Training Camp and LeBron

    Pedro Alvarez’s throwing woes have not subsided after the All-Star break and he has become a defensive liability, especially late in games.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Pirates.jpg Pirates beat Rockies 5-3 for 3-game sweep

    Taking the extra base was the key for the Pittsbur‘gh Pirates in completing a three-game sweep of the Colorado Rockies. Andrew McCutchen hit a tiebreaking single in the seventh inning, Neil Walker followed with a home run and the Pirates overcame a three-run deficit to beat the Rockies 5-3 Sunday.

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

Shoot For 2
House Ads
Photo of the Day