EPIC Times
2016 April Newsletter
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Program Update

EPIC has started 2016 with a bang! The 3rd and 4th grade winter teams showed that they can compete with the big boys throughout the cold months. The boys played in tournaments all over the northern suburbs including Hampshire, Lake Barrington and Deerfield, just to name a few. The season was highlighted by a 1st place finish at the Storm tournament in South Elgin. The enthusiastic group of 4th grade players and parents left their mark in every gym with their great attitudes and teamwork, even leading to multiple spectators commenting on the fun and excitement that EPIC has during games.

The energy from the winter season spilled over to spring tryouts. Over 250 students came out for a chance to play for EPIC, which was the largest turnout yet. Running nine teams from ages 10-17, each group has made a significant improvements in talent from last year’s teams.

The season began March 13th, with EPIC Sunday. These Sunday workouts consist of four 30 minute stations that the boys rotate through. The stations are comprised of basketball skills, speed & agility training, leadership development and Christian devotionals. This Sunday workout is a great introduction to the EPIC program and set the tone for practice.

Practices have a distinctly different feel to them this year. Each team has a central focus on developing each player’s individual skills. This is done by having 50% of each practice devoted to skill work. The winter teams served as the pilot for this philosophy. After incredible player improvement and much team success, coaches are confident and excited to implement this system with the all of the grade levels. The dedicated player development is consistent with EPIC’s primary mission to help each player earn a spot on a college team. Be sure to make time to see these talented young men during tournaments this year!

EPIC parents had some fun of their own, in March, during the inaugural reception fundraiser. Many parents and friends came out to support the organization and enjoy a great night (without the kids).

3rd /4th vs 4th Ballhawks- 10am @ERC
4th vs. 4th Ballhawks- 10am @ERC
5th vs. 5th Ballhawks- 11am @ERC
6th vs 6th Ballhawks- 11am @ERC
7th vs. 7th Ballhawks- 12pm @ERC
8th vs. 8th Ballhawks- 12pm @ERC
9th Blue vs. 9th Ballhawks- 3pm @EA

9th Green vs. 10th Ballhawks- 4pm @EA
11th vs. World Class- 5pm @EA
ERC= Elgin Rec Centre
EA= Elgin Academy

Upcoming Events

Kickoff Day: April 9

1st tournament: April 16-17

Service Night (FMSC): April 19

2nd tournament: April 23-24

Baraboo Camp: April 30-May 1

Family Night/Raffle: May 13

Players Spotlight- The "Genoa Boys"
Bailey Foley, Justin McNeal and Zach Miller have been playing together since they were 7 years old for their 3rd grade feeder team. So it was only natural for the trio to join the EPIC family together. These three boys (along with Kashmir Ivy) have created a formidable core for EPIC, throughout their entire high school career.
Bailey is the firecracker guard that creates havoc on both sides of the court. According to his parents, Bailey creates havoc at home too. Justin is the versatile forward who can really stretch with his outside shooting. Justin is an incredibly well mannered kid, with a high basketball IQ. Zach is the sneaky kid, for which the young campers should beware at Expeditions Unlimited camp. On the court, Zach is a combo guard that can distribute and light up the scoreboard with a sweet stroke.

Get to know the "Genoa Boys" a little better:
1. What is your favorite thing to do outside of basketball?
Bailey- Play golf.
JustinMy favorite thing is getting friends together and just hanging out playing sports and video games.
ZachPaintball with friends.

2. Do you have any siblings?
Bailey4 siblings. Older sister Brea that has a baby named Decklyn. older brother Brandon, younger sister Brooke, and baby brother Benjamin (future epic player).
I have one sibling and I don't know what I would do without him. His name is Griffin he went of to college this year to Ripon College to play football. He made me a better person and athlete, he motivated me to be better and made me competitive.
ZachYes two sisters one twin brother. Ashley and jami both played softball. Jami played at the university of Memphis and Ashley played at Kirkwood.

3. What has been your favorite EPIC experience?
BaileyGoing to Wisconsin for the team bonding camp.
JustinMy favorite experience was going to the camp in the summer we had a fun time and bonded as a team, which made us better.
ZachThe fist year I went to baraboo Wisconsin.

4. What have you learned during your time with EPIC?
BaileyHow to be a team player and work together.
JustinThe game of basketball isn't all about the skills there is other things you can do to be better as a person and a team.
Zach- I learned how to connect with God through sports.

5. What advice do you have for the young EPIC ballers?
Bailey-  Listen to your coaches and work hard.
JustinDo everything 110 percent work hard don't have any regrets!
ZachListen and believe in what your coaches tell u and it will work. Give 100 pecent always in practice and games.
Inaugural Reception Fundraiser
Thank you for making the inaugural EPIC Reception Fundraiser was a huge success! The event took place in Elgin at the Haight, which is a converted warehouse. 110 friends, families and people looking to learn about EPIC came together to have some adult fun, away from their kids and to support the EPIC cause. Kyla Duewel and Elegante Cuisine led a team of EPIC high schoolers to serve passed hors d’eouvres. The attendees enjoyed smooth sounds from the tremendous band, Hutson and the FX Project.

The night was organized to supplement the implemented programs. At a cost of $400, EPIC is about 1/3 the cost of many similar programs in the area. It is important that ALL players are able to join the team, when offered. The proceeds from the reception will go towards the financial assistance fund to help families that are in need. Another objective of the reception was to raise money for the Robbie Fehlman Scholarship Fund. This scholarship will be awarded to a college student that best demonstrates the character, work ethic and positive attitude by which Robbie lived his life. Desmond Douglas, a former teammate of Robbie, gave an eloquent address and captured the essence of the legacy that EPIC is keeping alive through the Robbie Fehlman Scholarship fund.
Thanks to all the reception attendees and donors, EPIC was able to raise over $6500 in excess of expenses. If you weren’t able to attend the fundraiser, feel free to check out the pictures on the EPIC Facebook. In case you’re wondering, donations are still being accepted. The money from the evening will go towards gym time, leadership development retreat and, of course, the Robbie Fehlman Scholarship fund. Extra special thank you to our sponsors, including the Schrieber Financial Group!

Coach's Corner- Damion Abrams

1. Who is your favorite basketball player? Why?
Russell Westbrook because he is RELENTLESS!

2. What do you do in your spare time?
I coach and do a lot of research.
3. What do you enjoy most about coaching and why did you choose to coach with EPIC?
My most enjoyable part about coaching is having a positive impact on young men's lives. I coach with EPIC because of the GREAT COMMISSION => E.P.I.C. (Empowering People In Christ).

4. What is something about you that most people don't know?
I'm a pastor.

5. Who is your role model?

6. What has been your best experience coaching?
Having the parents of kids that I've coached, inform me that the time their kids spend under my charge has positively influenced their lives.

7. If you could say one thing to the players of EPIC what would it be? 
"Follow me, as I follow Christ!"
Copyright © 2016 EPIC Youth, All rights reserved.
EPIC Times- Quarterly Newsletter

Our mailing address is:
P.O. Box 518
Elgin, IL 60121

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EPIC · P.O. Box 518 · Elgin, IL 60121 · USA

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