Hometown Report: Chuck Hayes returns to Modesto for youth basketball camp

Chuck Hayes turned 31 last month, a number that might make people who remember him at Modesto Christian High School feel old.

But don’t worry. The NBA is ruthless in the ways it has found to make Hayes feel old at every turn.

At the start of last season, before Hayes was traded by Sacramento to Toronto, he saw a small tattoo on Kings teammate Ben McLemore. It read, “Est. 1993.”

“Man, I couldn’t believe I was 10 years older than him,” Hayes said. “Then, I was in an interview with Jabari Parker, who is from Chicago, and I asked him about growing up watching Michael Jordan. He said all he knew about Jordan was from his days with the Wizards.

“It blew my mind.”

One of the best ways to stay young is to surround yourself with young people, which is what Hayes will be doing July 25-26 when he hosts the Back to School Basketball Camp at Big Valley Christian School. It actually will be two camps, under the umbrella of Slam ’N Jam, with preschool through fifth grade running from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.and sixth- through 12th-graders going from 1:30 to 5:30 p.m. both days.

“I’ll be there from 8:30 to 6 every day – they have me on the clock,” Hayes said. “And since I’m on the clock, I’m going to use that time not only to make the kids better, but to make myself better.”

Hayes has done camps in Modesto before – mainly one-day events in which he attended as a star counselor. But he said this will be the first time he’s been involved in a youth camp to this degree.

“I’m excited about this camp,” he said. “I’m looking at this as a chance for me to come back and help kids who really want to learn about this game. And it’s Slam ’N Jam and I'm a part of that. When I was growing up in Slam ’N Jam, I wished someone from the NBA would have come to talk with us. Now I’m in that position where I can come back and do that.”

Hayes makes his offseason home in Houston, where he started his NBA career (2005-11), but he says he’s in Modesto to see family and friends as often as possible. While playing with the Kings, he was a regular at Modesto Christian basketball games.

“If I’m in California for anything, I make my way to Modesto,” Hayes said. “I’m no stranger to highways 99 and 5.”

He’s in the final year of his contract with the Raptors, a deal that will take him to the end of his 10th NBA season. But he’s far from finished in the game.

“I’ve been able to find my niche in this league, and three teams so far have seen value in what I do,” Hayes said. “I’m going to stick around in this league as long as they let me.”

Registration for the Back to School Basketball Camp is $80 through Saturday, then jumps to $110. The camp will accept registrations on the first day of camp. Registration includes all instruction and a camp basketball to take home. In addition, all campers will receive a raffle ticket for a chance to win tickets to a Toronto-Sacramento game, an autographed basketball and Raptors gear.

For more information, call (209) 324-6036 or (209) 450-9435 or email

East Union’s Riley headed to USGA Women’s Amateur Championship

East Union High’s Brooke Riley shot a 2-over-par 72 at Oakland’s Sequoyah Country Club on Monday to finish fourth and claim one of eight regional qualifying spots for next month’s USGA Women’s Amateur Championship.

Riley, who will be a junior, already is a two-time Modesto Bee All-District Golfer of the Year and currently is ranked fourth in the Junior Golf Association of Northern California point standings. She won the Bumgardner Junior Memorial at Del Rio Country Club last week with a two-day score of 1-under-par 143 that was clear of the field by 16 strokes.

The Women’s Amateur, Aug. 4-10 at Nassau Country Club in Glen Cove, N.Y., starts with two days of stroke play that reduces the field of 156 to 64 for single-elimination match play. The championship match is 36 holes.

Stanislaus’ Relles receives NCAA degree-completion award

Emily Relles, a soccer player at Cal State Stanislaus whose athletic eligibility and athletic scholarship have expired, is one of 61 student-athletes nationwide to receive an NCAA Division II degree-completion award.

Relles, who is within an academic year of earning a degree in biology, twice was honored by Stanislaus during its annual athlete honor breakfast. To be eligible for the NCAA award, nominees must be within 32 semester hours of completion and have at least a 2.5 cumulative grade-point average. Other factors are financial circumstances, athletic achievement and involvement in campus and community activities.

Relles, a native of Saugus, is fourth on Stanislaus’ all-time assists list with 21 and set a single-season school record with 12 assists in 2012.

Water polo teams fare well at Independence Cup

The 17-under and 15-under boys water polo teams from Modesto-Stanislaus Water Polo Club posted top-four finishes at last weekend’s Independence Cup Tournament in Stockton.

The older team split its games in the tournament’s final day to finish third, bouncing back from a 17-0 loss to Big Valley Blue to edge Bangarang 19-18 in a shootout. Nathan Olson had six goals and Alex Selee five for Modesto-Stanislaus.

The 15-under team finished second in its flight, settling for 7-7 ties against Ripon and Big Valley Water Polo on the final day. Ryan Salazar had two goals in each game for Modesto-Stanislaus.