The Westchester County Center in White Plains, New York, home to the NBA’s D-League Westchester Knicks, was the site of the inaugural game between two local teams of a new national Women’s D-League, The Westchester Shooting Stars Women's Basketball League. This evening's match-up was between the Westchester Shooting Stars and the Connecticut Stars. These two teams are part of the six team league with franchises in New York, Connecticut, New Jersey, Delaware, the District of Columbia and Georgia. The Westchester Shooting Stars will call the County Center their home court, sharing the facility with the Westchester Knicks. The Connecticut Stars will play their home games at the Webster Bank Arena in Bridgeport, CT, home of the Fairfield University Stags basketball and Sacred Heart University hockey.
The Westchester Shooting Stars Women’s D-League was started by New York’s basketball power couple, Mark and Danielle Bethea as a way to provide talented women an opportunity to showcase their skills in a competitive league. Each year, there are approximately 35 open draft slots for new WNBA players. The NCAA estimates that only 3% of draft-eligible NCAA Division I women’s basketball graduates make it to the WNBA professional ranks. For those not interested in disrupting their lives to head overseas and join a professional team, the options were limited. Until Now.
The National Federation of State High School Associations (NFSHA) reports that basketball is the third most popular sport among high school students with over 420,000 young women participating in competitive high-school level basketball. Over 16,000 women participate in NCAA college-level women’s basketball programs. Thousands more adult women play competitive basketball in community-sponsored recreational leagues.
The league's season will run from November through March and, if this exhibition game gave evidence that the quality of play will be high, the level of competition will be fierce, and it will provide a great afternoon or evening of family fun to watch. Look for more detailed coverage on the Westchester Shooting Stars Women's D-League Basketball in the upcoming March-April 2017 issue of MetroSports Magazine. We'll have more photos, interviews with league officials, coaches and players and more details of what to expect from this exciting new league. MetroSports Magazine is always online and free at www.MetroSportsMag.com
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