It's a pretty common occurrence when it comes to an open gym: a smattering of guys show up on a fairly inconsistent basis. Everybody has their own interpretation of the rules, and it either becomes a layup contest or a three-point barrage.
But a few months ago, Aaron Stoddard decided to change all that. He had the dream of reforming a south county adult basketball league, playing competitive games and finding some continuity in the local basketball community.
When PortlandBasketball.com stepped in, that dream became a reality. The Scappoose Basketball League will form this summer as an extension of the open gyms, with the hope of bringing together the several hundred random open gym attendees into a cohesive group.
Open gyms currently happen four days a week – Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday at 5:30 p.m. at the Scappoose Middle School, and Wednesday at 6 a.m. at Otto Peterson Elementary School – and by August, Stoddard hopes to have enough teams to make a workable schedule.
At this point, three teams have formed, totaling about 22 participants. Stoddard says they'll need four or five teams to make things easier for travel, but eight teams would be optimal. The teams would play six of their seven league games at home in Scappoose, with each team rotating to play a squad from north Portland.
And it won't just be a collection of guys showing up to pass the ball around for an hour or so. The league won't call fouls on the honor system – they'll bring referees out from PortlandBasketball.com and use a clock.
Stoddard also says he'd like to set up some sort of championship for south Columbia County, which hasn't seen an adult basketball league for a decade, not since the teachers formed a league at St. Helens High School nearly 10 years ago.
Prospective players can visit scappoosebasketball.com for more information and to sign up their teams. The fees for a team are $294, which helps to pay for officiating and insurance. The league hopes to get things started as early as Aug. 4, the first day the middle school will be staffed after their July break.