ST. THOMAS - The Virgin Islands University Sports Federation is slated to send four athletes to Gwangju, South Korea, today to participate in the 28th World University Games set for July 3-14.
The Games are held every two years and is restricted to student athletes who have not been out of collegiate competition for more than a year and are between 17 and 28 years old. More than 13,000 athletes from 141 countries are expected to compete.
Most of the U.S. Virgin Islands athletes enrolled in U.S. mainland colleges are basketball players, according to last year's rosters. In fact, one of them, St. Croix's Rakeem Christmas of Syracuse University, was selected in the second round of the NBA Draft last week.
Basketball also topped last year's list.
Football is again second this year; baseball is making a comeback; and sailors are gaining in numbers.
Three minor league baseball players born in the Virgin Islands are all now competing at the Double-A level.
But although Jabari Blash, Jharel Cotton and Akeel Morris are now at the same professional level, none is in the same league.
The St. Thomas products are in each of the three Double-A leagues: Blash for the Jackson (Tenn.) Generals in the Southern League, Cotton for the Tulsa (Okla.) Drillers in the Texas League, and Morris for the Binghamton (N.Y.) Mets of the Eastern League.
ST. CROIX - The V.I. Volleyball Federation is presenting the Sand Slam Beach Volleyball Summer Tournament Sunday at Fort Frederik Beach on St. Croix.
The tournament, for males and females, has four age divisions, and costs $25 per team.
The tournament runs from 9 a.m. until 7 p.m.
For more information, contact Lucille Hobson at 277-0042.
Rakeem Christmas entered the NBA in style on Thursday night, and will play with King James.
The St. Croix big man from Syracuse University, wearing a bright floral print on the coat of his dark blue suit, was the 36th player selected in Thursday night's NBA Draft at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn.
For the player expected to carry the V.I. torch in the league after the legendary Crucian Tim Duncan calls it a career someday soon, the pick had the Virgin Islands written all over it.
Rakeem Christmas has spent the last year answering questions about his NBA qualifications.
And now, the most important question - where will he play? - will be answered for the Crucian big man tonight.
A strong senior year and impressive workouts have all but assured Christmas will be among one of the 60 players drafted into the league tonight.
But has the 6-foot-9 Syracuse University graduate done enough to assure he's among the 30 first-round picks - which comes with the promise of at least a guaranteed two-year contract?