Bring on the Bombers

"Whew! That was the most intense game we've played!"

These were the words of Officer Warren Thompson, a Community Affairs officer at the 46th Precinct in the Bronx, after his team's one-point victory over the Bronx Community Solutions Bombers. (For pictures, click here. Click on slide images for captions.)

The Bombers started off strong, keeping up a lead until the last quarter of the game, when the police team was finally able to trump the Bombers' fast footwork, coordinated passing, and nothing-but-net three-pointers. The final score was 42-41.

Working together for two months, the Bombers have developed from a collection of individuals looking for a game into a unit of players who have learned to rely on each other's skills.

This is an important part of the program, not only because it will help the team win games in the future, but also because it teaches useful real-life skills about teamwork, self-discipline, and good sportsmanship.

It also helps bring together two groups that have a history of negative interactions: law enforcement officials and urban youth. During the game, team members congratulated each other on making good plays and maintained a competitive but respectful dynamic. Afterwords, everyone shook hands. Officer Thompson had the last word: "Wow. Those young guys are good!"

Next week, the Bombers play a team from FEGS (Federation Educational and Guidance Services), one of Bronx Community Solution's partner agencies. A simple suggestion for the FEGS team: bring your A game, because you're about to get bombed!