UPPER PENINSULA — If you’ve been to any of the local girls high school basketball games this year, you might have seen Mariah LaPointe–Dunham in the stands. That’s because she is scouting players to be part of the new girls athletic amateur union team, better known as AAU.
“Basically what that is is you’re playing in front of college coaches. You go to different tournaments throughout the United States. We’ll primarily be in the Midwest though,” LaPointe–Dunham said.
And the timing for creating this team couldn’t be better as the U.P. is currently flooded with exceptional talent among the girls basketball teams.
“This is probably one of the best talented years that I’ve seen, and it’s only growing. We have a lot of girls that are in 9th and 10th grade right now that are going to tryout for us that are very, very talented. And I think that if we can bundle that talent together and get girls exposure in front of college coaches, it can only make their future brighter,” said LaPointe Dunham.
The flyer has been out for a couple months now and there has been a great response from players and parents across the Upper Peninsula.
“I’ve gotten girls as far as Sault Ste. Marie to Houghton, so east and west ends. I think our biggest base will be out of the Marquette–Ishpeming–Negaunee area. But I am hoping for any individual that thinks they have the talent and they want to take it to the next level and they want to play college basketball. I encourage you to tryout,” LaPointe–Dunham said.
Tryouts will be this Sunday at 10 a.m. at Westwood High School and it will feature skills work, as well as head–to–head play from one–on–one up to five–on–five.
“It’s going to be myself, along with a lot of former college players and even some former college coaches that will be there helping me assess some of the players and what they see. It’s going to be a fun event. If you’re a basketball junkie, you should be there,” said LaPointe–Dunham.
The announcement of the final roster will hopefully come within two days. For more information, head to their Facebook page at Level Up Express.