Channeling My Inner Ninja

“You never know how strong you are until being strong is your only choice” – Bob Marley

I was diagnosed with Stage 2a Testicular Cancer at the age of 21. You never think you are going to be the one diagnosed with cancer, especially at such a young age. Nevertheless, as we all know too well, cancer does not discriminate against age, gender, or ethnicity.

It all started in the summer of my junior year going into my senior year of college. I had just finished my outdoor season at Rider University where I was a Long/Triple Jumper. I just had the best season of my career and had set all my personal best in both my events. I was in the best shape of my life. Then came August 14, 2012. After going to see a few doctors to be evaluated, they urged me to go and speak with an Urologist. My life changed that day. I remember walking into the office with my dad. We shook the doctor’s hand and then took a seat. The first words that came out of his mouth were, “Greg there is no beating around the bush, you have cancer.” You hear the words “you have cancer,” and you immediately start having hundreds of questions run through your head. How could I have cancer? How did I get it? Am I going to live? Then I looked up over at my dad and made eye contact. We both just said, “well we are going to beat it!” It was this positive attitude that made the difference and got me through it.

After visiting many other doctors to get multiple opinions on how to treat my cancer, we decided to go to Memorial Sloan Kettering in New York City. Here I was to go through four rounds of chemotherapy, which consisted of 3-week cycles. A 3-week cycle consisted of 4 hours a day for 5 days a week. Then came hydration on the 6 th day with 2 weeks recovery to follow. After completing my chemotherapy on November 17th, I had to start mentally preparing for my major surgery that was to take place on January 4th. This 5-hour surgery was to remove all of the Lymph nodes in my abdomen. It left me with a scar from my pelvis to my sternum, which took 70 staples to close up. But, on January 11th we had found out that my surgery was a success and I was cancer free!

After the long road of recovery that took about 1 year, I was back in school and on my track team. With the help of my teammates, family, and roommate Anthony DeFranco (Ninja Regional Director), I was able to get back out on the track and continue right where I left off and break my Long Jump personal record post-cancer to finish off my career!

Now that Anthony and I had finished our collegiate careers, we were in search of our next sport. Then came American Ninja Warrior! Anthony and I started training together in October of 2015. We were both very new to the sport and found out quickly how tough both mentally and physically you had to be to compete in this sport. However, that was the one of the best parts about it. I loved the fact that it was a brand new challenge.

After training for a couple months, we decided that we were going to make submission videos and apply to the show. We submitted our videos in December and then had to wait 4 months to find out if we were going to get the call to compete. Then, in early May, we received the call. All of our training was going to be put to the test. On May 27th we got our chance to step out on the course in Philadelphia and compete as American Ninja Warriors!

Come visit me at Centercourt Club+Sports – Lawrence NJ, where I run the Centercourt_Ninja programs!!
 

2018/19 Tryouts for Centercourt Football Club and the U7 Scholarship Program

CFC Tryouts Image

U7 Scholarship Program

As the first club in the area to offer this program in the depth that we do, CFC is proud to see other clubs in the area start to offer the same scholarship style program for U7s for this upcoming tryout season. We are proud to have made a major shift in the NJ soccer world again and to help get more young athletes playing the game of soccer. The major difference between the CFC program and other clubs program is CFC is offering a full club program where as other clubs offer one session a week and some festivals. CFC is offering multiple sessions a week, tournaments and gameplay every weekend of the season in the fall, winter and spring seasons. This is what sets our U7 scholarship program apart from the others.

Tryouts
We are excited to host tryouts at our Gillette dome and look forward to the first tryout season in the new state of the art facility.  Our tryouts will be the same as previous years with players needing to attend both tryouts to be considered for the team. With our tryout numbers growing every year, we are looking forward to the number of players walking through our doors for the 2018/19 season tryouts.  We will be offering boys teams from U7 to U13 and U18 boys. On the girls side we will be offering teams from U7 to U15.

 ID Sessions

CFC understands the tryout process is stressful and not an extremely pleasant experience for players in the state of NJ, due to the way the state allows multiple different weeks, and the fact tryouts might clash with your current team’s schedule as majority of tryouts are held in the middle of your spring schedule.  For the past couple years CFC has tried to make this process a little easier and allow players a chance to be evaluated in a more natural environment that a player is used to and our ID Sessions have been a big hit over the past 3 tryout seasons. This allows players to come and train with their age group/level before the tryouts and this way they have an extra chance to be evaluated and looked at by our team of professional coaches. This is beneficial as players can have a bad tryout, or have had a bad day at school or be under the weather or they might get injured right before tryouts. The ID session allows for extra protection in this area and now they have a pre-evaluation as well as their tryout. We will be offering ID sessions in the months leading up to the tryout season.  The ID sessions do not count as a tryout and players must still attend the tryouts to be considered for a CFC team.

We look forward to seeing everyone very soon!

Centercourt Boys Lacrosse holds Assessment Day for Summer 2018 Development Teams

 

Calling all Lacrosse Players! Centercourt Boys Lacrosse is holding an Assessment Day on March 3, 2018 for Summer 2018 Development Teams! Assessment Day will be held on March 3, at Centercourt Club+Sports – Lawrence NJ. Register and come visit our Boys Lacrosse leadership Team and understand how our ground-breaking Boys Lacrosse programs can offer your player the competitive advantage.
Assessment Day March 3rd
Full skills evaluation for each player
Full athletic skills evaluation – powered by ADAPT performance & Rehab
Class-room session, which will be used to provide full details on the Development Team

Q+A session to answer players/parents questions

2018 Development Team
Summer team, which focuses on the development of each individual player
We will travel to two in-state tournaments (June/July)
One practice per week during the course of the program

Each teams Performance Training will be powered by ADAPT Performance & Rehab

 

Centercourt Lacrosse Coming to Montclair Spring 2018!

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My name is Beth Larkin and I have been a lacrosse coach in Essex County for about 20 years! In that time, I have served as a youth lacrosse coach, a high school coach at Montclair Kimberley Academy, and for the last few years, at the helm of Glen Ridge High School. During my time at Glen Ridge, we’ve seen a great deal of success including 5 Essex County Championships, 2 State Championships, and multiple Conference Championships, while being consistently ranked as one of New Jersey’s top teams.

While I am proud of those accolades, I am even more proud of the young women athletes who have been a part of my life these past 20 years. I have always felt that as a coach, if we focus on the process and the character of our players and team as a whole, then the successes come in spades, which is not only seen within the win column. I feel successful in the coaching capacity when I see these players grow their confidence, leadership, and enthusiasm.

These attributes are what enticed me to join Centercourt Sports Club and Centercourt Lacrosse Club. Having the opportunity to meet with Kim Christos, Director of CLC, was an amazing experience, where I felt like I was reuniting with an old friend. Kim and I share the same philosophy about the power of the process, player development in both the sport of lacrosse and the overall growth of the athlete with regard to their character and confidence. At CLC, it’s not all about the win, it’s about the player!

At CLC, we are approaching the club scene in a new light and are embracing a forward-thinking approach to the player’s (and family’s) overall experience. By lessening the grind of the summer & fall weekend travel circuit and curating our team’s summer and fall experience to serve their talents and needs, we feel the overall club experience will be more positive, player-focused and development oriented. We understand that for most, the ultimate goal is to be recruited to play at the college level, but the recruiting landscape has since changed over the years and we believe that a better method exists in getting players the necessary exposure.

The best news yet is knowing that Centercourt is coming to Essex County’s backyard very soon. We will be moving into the Montclair bubble on Depot Square! Renovations on the site should begin this summer and ready to offer full programming next fall! To introduce Centercourt and CLC to the area, we will be hosting our Spring Tune-Up Series. Players can choose one to three dates in March to gear up for their upcoming youth town league seasons! I will be there along with some of Centercourt’s top-notch coaches to get those stick skills, game tactics and athletic conditioning ready to go for the season’s start! You can register for these clinics by following the link below. Come join us and get to know Centercourt and CLC better!

Girls Lacrosse Bootcamps

Centercourt FC 09/10 Find Their Form In Florida

Earlier this month, Centercourt FC 09/10 boys traveled to Orlando, Florida to compete in the National 3 v 3 finals. The tournament is comprised of teams from around the country playing for the title of national champion.

CFC had the opportunity to compete against teams from Florida, Georgia and New Jersey. With a great showing in the group stages, the boys made the semifinals on Monday, ultimately finishing in 3rd place overall. It was an incredible experience as well as an amazing performance from the team. The results for the tournament can be found below:

https://www.espnwwos.com/events/soccer/disney-3v3-soccer-championship/
Disney 3v3 Soccer Championships | Events – espnwwos.com
www.espnwwos.com
Compete against teams from more than 20 countries at the Disney Cup International Youth Soccer Tournament at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex at the Walt Disney Resort.

In addition to the competitive games, the boys got the opportunity to visit the famous Disney theme parks such as The Magic Kingdom and Epcot, as well as having meet and greets with characters like Goofy and Mickey, among other Disney characters.

It was truly a fantastic experience for all those involved.

We are already looking forward to Disney 3v3 2019!

Banerjee Doubles Down at 2017 National Winter Championships

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Centercourt’s own Samir Banerjee capped off his 2017 with a bang as he rolled through the Boys 14’s singles and doubles draw out west in Tucson, Arizona for the L1 USTA National Winter Championships. Samir has been training at the Centercourt Academy for a couple of years now, and it’s very clear to see all the hard work paying off.

“I have been playing quite well since the National Indoor Hard Court Championships in November, and was able to take that form and momentum into the highly coveted and historic Orange Bowl tournament, as well as Winter Nationals,” said Samir.
“Centercourt Tennis Academy has played a vital role in preparing me to compete at the national level. I now recognize the importance of planning for each match both on and off the court physically and mentally. I would like to thank Coach Clay, and Coach Adrian for their pivotal roles in preparing me to become the best player I can be. Having the opportunity to train at Centercourt with other high quality players and coaches is what I attribute to getting me where I am today,” Samir also added.

Coach Adrian Contreras, Director of Elite Tennis at Centercourt Tennis Academy has seen Samir really prove himself as of late as well. “Team Centercourt is extremely proud of Samir and what he has accomplished in Tucson. Samir is a very resilient and resourceful competitor. Not only does he love to play the big points, he is exceptional at finding the right combinations necessary to stay aggressive while playing high percentage tennis. Samir has continued to improve his tactical discipline and awareness; areas which I feel led him to his championship run so dominantly. We look forward to Samir’s continual tennis development here at Centercourt.”

Centercourt Tennis Academy looks forward to the continued success of it’s players heading into 2018. We hope to see many more trophies in the future for Samir and all of our hard-working players. Once again, congratulations to Samir and best wishes for continued success in your career!

Centercourt Morristown Serves Up 1st Annual Snowball UTR Tournament

 

This past Wednesday saw a great turnout for Centercourt’s 1st annual “Snowball UTR Tournament” with some incredible competition along the way.

Centercourt would like to wish a big thank you and congratulations to all players and parents that came out to support this event. UTR continues to revolutionize the sport of tennis in so many ways, and we at Centercourt will look to continue building off its momentum in the coming future. Allowing players to be seeded in various divisions based on their personal UTR ratings encourages and enhances the level of competition on a consistent basis. For our first tournament, there were three separate divisions, which included the Grinch Division, the Frost Division, and the Rudolph Division. A massive congratulations to the winners of each respective division, seen below:

Grinch Division Winner:
Jessie Rievman

Frosty Division Winner:
Dhruv Viswanathan

Rudolph Division Winner:
Caitlin Yang

All results from the tournament can be found by clicking the link below:

1st Annual Snowball UTR Tournament Results

 

Please be sure to keep an eye and ear out for information on our next event and all future events going forward in 2018. Thank you again to everyone included and we look forward to seeing everyone again very soon!