2001 Silver Medal Three on Three Basketball Winners
By Tom Kurpinsky
For the second year the California State Firefighter’s Olympics offered a 3 on 3 tournament to start off the Olympic week in beautiful San Diego. (Is there any chance we can play there every year? I see no need to bring the games up north.) We opted again to play in the over 39 division. We started out strong beating L.A. County, Sacramento and San Diego. Those three wins put us in the Gold Medal game against our new nemesis L.A. County. (This is the team that last year ended our 3 year run of Gold in the 5 on 5 over 39 years old competition.) We just couldn’t beat them in the second game. We shot poorly this time around and Rick Lewis lit us up like a Christmas Tree. He made difficult shots throughout the game while we just missed. When you put the ball in the basket the game is easy, when you don’t you struggle. This was just an early week lesson on what it was going to be like to struggle. We would learn more as the week went on. Congratulations to County, you beat us again. I hope you inspire us to get better in order to win our gold back next year!!

The team was again made up of our usual cast of characters: Dave Long, Dan Armenta, Treut Sperry and Tom Kurpinsky. Coach MORENO was also with us rooting us on and telling us how to beat teams. We also had great support from all the Long, Armenta and Moreno kids. They continue to inspire us to keep playing and make it a joy knowing they are behind us 100%. They make you feel so good as they are always there with a high five when you come out of the game whether you just did something great or something great for the other team. I LOVE YOU MAN!!!

So the week started out with a medal. Silver is okay. At least we knew we’d go home with something. It was the beginning of a great week and there was so much more that was going to unfold. That will be another story and please look for it in the Main Line. They pay me by the article and I don’t want to short change myself. To the team, Great job. To our fans thank you. It is always a pleasure hanging around and being with all of you!!!

Photos provided by Tom Kurpinsky


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