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Midnight basketball league has rivalry brewing in Riviera Beach

Posted at 11:31 PM, Mar 10, 2017
and last updated 2019-03-26 14:21:43-04

It's Friday night in Riviera Beach. Tensions are high. The past not forgotten. 

"Wooo, first game was pretty rough!" says Cedric Thomas, wearing blue.

"Are y'all serous? This is what y'all want?" says Jalawrence Minor, wearing yellow. 

"It's a rivalry," Thomas says. 

"They wanted a rematch," Minor says. 

Last time these two teams played, blue lost to yellow by 30, 45-15. 

Tonight, the Riviera Beach Police Department, in blue, hopes to avenge their loss to Stoneybrook-a section 8 housing development in Riviera Beach. They're in yellow. 

"When they see us outside a basketball gym, they feel like the have someone more personal. More of a friend. Not just a cop coming into the area," says Riviera Beach Police Captain Nathan Gordon. 

"Stoneybrook is known for police activity and a lot of crime. We're just here to show them that everybody from there is not there for crime," says Mojo, from Stoneybrook.

It's the midnight basketball league-part of Mayor Master's crime reduction initiative. It started six weeks ago. 

The police department says crime was down 9% in 2016, compared to 2015. This simple game hopes to assist. 

"The community is our backbone. We rely on them a lot for everything we do. This right here is bridging it," Gordon says. 

"These are the same people that you see on a consistent basis and you get a different side of them to know, not just a one sided person. So yeah, eventually it'll make a change," Mojo says. 

Stoneybrook won again, but by 7, 30-23. A win yes, but there's more. 

"I think it's beautiful, it's not about the money or the hype or the fame or the money nothing. It's much deeper than that. I'm proud to be apart of it," Mojo says. 

It's Friday night in Riviera Beach. It's time for basketball. 


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