Fencor 1989s: Welcome

2006 AAU National Runner-Ups-Fencor 1989s!

The web site for Fencor 1989's AAU girls basketball team. They have made the AAU national championship game 5 times in a row (winning 3) and made the finals in 2006 with just 7 players.
Note: Go to News section for additional stories & pics of championship team.

                        2006 Fencor 16A team tournament schedule
April 1-2: Charlie Smith Memorial Tournament at Wilmington PAL (3-1)
April 8-9: AAU SuperRegionals (6-0, champions) 
April 14-16: Nike/Boo Williams Tournament (3-1, pool champion)
April 29-30: 16-and-under Middle Altantics at Phila. Belles (7-1)
May 21-22: 16-and-under Middle Atlantic championship games:
Fencor 57, Rebels 44; Fencor 64, Rebels 59 (win 8th straight title)
June 10-11: Temple University Camp (4-0, including wins over NJ & MD champs)
June 17-18: Fencor Summer Classic (4-0, pool champions)
July 6-9: Nike/End of the Trail Tournament in Oregon City (6-2, Red bracket champs, made overall finals)
July 11-18: AAU Division I 16-and-under nationals in Orlando (9-1, second in country, Doty, Acker, Shine named All-America).
July 27-31: Women's Nike Nationals in Augusta, Ga. (3-3, made championship round)
Sept. 30-Oct. 1: Blue Chip Fall Ball at VIllanova (5-0, with wins over Penn State champion Empire Dragons and Exodus)

Season's record to date: 52-9


Shorthanded Fencor makes fifth appearance in national final

The 7-time state champion Comets Red AAU team finally captures the crown.

Buddy Collings
Sentinel Staff Writer

July 19, 2006

LAKE BUENA VISTA -- With parents poised to take pictures, Brooke Thomas gave a trophy shaped and sized like a basketball a playful kiss. Then the shortest player on the FBVA Orlando Comets Red girls basketball team hugged the shiny treasure symbolizing national age-group supremacy.

Krystal Thomas, the tallest Comet, looked down, laughed, and said with palpable satisfaction, "Finally, we got one."

Who said kids these days need instant gratification?

The Comets, an all-star squad of girls who have chased titles since they were 8 and 9 years old, made state history Tuesday by dethroning Fencor of Philadelphia as national champions in the 16-and-under age group final at Disney's Wide World of Sports.

The Comets came from behind in the second half to win 71-65 and become Florida's first AAU girls basketball champion.

"We've been trying to win this since we were 8 playing up in the 10-and-under division," said Brooke Thomas, a rising junior at Edgewater. "It feels so good because Fencor killed us when we were little [in a 12s matchup]."

The Comets, who went 11-0 in the weeklong tournament, have exchanged some parts every season -- winning seven consecutive state AAU championships along the way. But the puzzle fits almost perfectly now, with Thomas in the middle of a team that has all the pieces.

"Each person brought something different," said Jaimie Givens, who delivered 15 points, eight rebounds and three crucial 3-point shots.

Krystal Thomas, a 6-foot-4 senior bound for Duke, struggled to score early but finished with 14 points, 14 rebounds and eight blocked shots and was voted tournament MVP by coaches.

Alexa Deluzio, a junior who plays alongside Krystal Thomas and Givens on First Academy's high school state title team, had a team-high 19 points. Deluzio and Sthefany Thomas (14 points) of Wesley Chapel made the 15-girl all-tourney team.

Fencor, which won the 14s title two years ago and the 15s in 2005, got 24 points from Caroline Doty, who put up big numbers all week. But they had to go without injured phenom Elena Delle Donne, a 6-5 junior.

"Elena averages 28 points and 12 rebounds, and she's a matchup nightmare," said Veronica Algeo, the Fencor coach. "But you still have to play the game, and I'm proud of my girls. Credit the Comets. Their defense was very tough."

The Kenner Angels of Louisiana won the third-place game, 67-64 against a Dayton (Ohio) Stars team that included Carlee Roethlisberger, sister of Ben, the Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback.

Buddy Collings can be reached at bcollings@orlandosentinel.com.

3-Time National Champions
The 3-Time National Champions
Thrice is Nice!

Fencor repeats as champs!

By JAMES D. HORNE, 07/28/05
The Leaf-Chronicle

Top-seeded Fencor (Pa.) left little doubt who was the best team at this year's AAU 15U Girls National Basketball Championships.
It wasn't easy, but Fencor got it done by topping the third-seeded Fairfax (Va.) Stars 78-67 in the championship game at the Dunn Center on Wednesday afternoon.

The win marks Fencor's second consecutive national championship and third overall — Fencor won the 12U title in 2002 — and its fourth straight trip to an AAU final. Fencor played the Stars in the 13U championship game, which the Stars won in 2003.

"It's really a special moment for these girls," Fencor coach Veronica Algeo said. "No core group of girls have ever won three national titles, and we're going to try to make history by winning three. They challenged themselves a lot to get better the whole tournament. Really, anything less than winning a national title was going to be a failure."

And it certainly helps to have an athlete like Fencor's Elena Delle Donne leading the way.

The No. 1-ranked player in her age group showed why she's received such billing by dropping a game-high 40 points. Caroline Doty added 14 points and Lindsay Kimmel had 12.

"It's a great feeling," Delle Donne said. "Each win felt great, and none was better than the other. It feels amazing to repeat also."

Delle Donne's worth was really displayed as she scored 18 of Fencor's last 28 points.

"I just did what I had to do," Delle Donne said. "That's pretty much it. When my team needs me, I want to step up for them, and thank God I was able to."

But Delle Donne wasn't the only scorcher on the court.

Fairfax's Jasmine Thomas, who was the 2005 Virginia high school basketball player of the year as a sophomore, did what she could for the Stars with her team-high 29 points. Chalysa Shegog had 16 points for the Stars and Taneisha Harrison chipped in eight.

Thomas scored 21 of the Stars' final 31 points, including a pair of 3-pointers at the end of the game.

"We came in with a game plan, but they were too tough," Thomas said. "We tried to bring our A-game. We both had two games before this, so there were some tired legs. But we're a good team and we'll be back."

Both coaches enjoyed watching the show Delle Donne and Thomas put on.

"It was a lot of fun," Fairfax coach Aggie McCormick-Dix said. "They're two completely different players, too. The kids and players who were watching in the stands got to see the best. If you are trying to reach a goal or have a dream, you have to understand this just doesn't happen. These girls have been playing since they were 9 years old, and their work paid off here."

"I'm sure ESPN was sorry they weren't here to see that," Algeo said. "Really, when you think about it, you have two great teams going against each other. And each team has two girls who were selected in the top 20 in the nation by Nike for all high school players in the nation. So there are the marquee names for each side. And then you step up and each team is playing great and each marquee player is playing well, it's great for the fans and players to watch."

Fencor took control of the game with a 16-4 run in the second half, that put Fencor up 68-52 on Shannon Ferguson's putback with 3:56 to play.

James D. Hornecovers prep sports for The Leaf-Chronicle and can be reached by e-mail at jameshorne@theleafchroincle.com.

Elena Delle Donne goes to the hoop in national championship game against Fairfax

CARING FOR TEAM: Defending Champions Have Gift, Which Lies in Love for Each Other

Caring for team
James D. Horne

Defending champions have gift, which lies in love for each other


The Leaf-Chronicle

Yes, Philadelphia-based Fencor is the top seed at this year's AAU 15U Girls National Basketball Championships.

Sure, they come into this year's tournament after most of the same group won the AAU's 14U title last year in Monroe, La.

And most people in the basketball world know that Fencor is led by Elena Delle Donne, who is listed as the top freshman guard in the country by USA Today.

But here's the essence that makes Fencor such a dominating team.

"It's amazing how much this team cares for each other," Fencor head coach Veronica Algeo said after the team's 72-40 opening game win over the Clarksville Net Force at the Dunn Center on Friday.

"Caroline Doty fractured her fibula right before Nationals last year, and we went with eight healthy players. The girls were so awesome to her. And Caroline was so awesome to them during the games, she was like an assistant coach on the bench. All the girls went out and got T-shirts with Doty's No. 5 and wore them as warm-ups.

"It's hard to say how these girls have become so close. But it's a unique thing, particularly the way sports in our culture have become so individualistic."

In the team members' eyes, the reason why Fencor is so tightly bonded is easy to explain.

"We always have so much fun," said Doty, 15, a sophomore who attends Germantown Academy in Fort Washington, Pa. "We're always working hard, but we always have smiles on our faces. Like, Shannon (Ferguson) is always picking everybody up. Elena always makes sure we're focused, but having fun and loving the game."

"It is a lot of fun," said Ferguson, 16, a junior at Upper Dublin High in Fort Washington. "It's been a lot of work, because we do a lot of traveling. We've been to Virginia, Oregon and Chicago. It's tiring, but I love it because it's always fun. I love all the girls on this team. We always just have a good time, even while we are playing."

Admittedly, it does help to have an athlete like Donne on the team.

The 6-foot-5 sophomore, who goes to Ursuline Academy in Wilmington, Del., is fully aware all eyes are on her when she steps on the court.

In Fencor's win on Friday, in which Donne led all scores with 22 points - most of which came in the first half - college coaches from Tennessee, Duke, Temple, Stanford, Virginia and a host of others were there to see her.

But Donne doesn't sweat the pressure.

"It doesn't really bother me," the 15-year-old said. "I just play my game. I don't really even think of them being there while I'm playing. I see them when I walk in and when I leave. But while I'm playing, I don't even know they are there."

And, sorry, coaches - so far, Donne hasn't decided where she wants to attend college.

"I have no idea," she said.

Really and truly, Donne is just as focused on making sure Fencor wins as the rest of her teammates are. Mainly, because it's a family affair.

"We're like nine sisters," Donne said. "It's not really like a team. Most of us have been together since we were 10 years old. It's just great that we're that close, because some teams have their ups and downs. But we never have to worry about that. We always have a great time together."

However, while Fencor is a tightly knit group, the team has only one accomplishment in mind.

"We're here to put all our hard work into the game and regain our title," Doty said.

Fencor knows it won't be easy, especially since it walks in with the notoriety that comes with winning the 14U championship last year.

"That actually makes it harder, because you see other teams when you walk in and they're like, `Oh, that's Fencor,'" Ferguson said. "You just know everyone sees you as the team they want to beat. And they are going to play against us as hard as they can, because they know we've won before. And they know we are coming back to win again."

But clearly, the two-fold bottom line for Fencor is ...

"We're here to win a championship," Donne said. "But we can still have fun doing it. But once it's game time, we're focused on winning because that's always been our goal."