Sunday’s Houston Sports Notebook

By Yolande Lezine
Updated: February 7, 2009

Sports HOUSTON — A brief look at some of the most recent news and notes involving area and national sports figures.

— The Texas Southern Lady Tigers are pleased to announce the official grand opening of the “Roughton-Broughton Kidz-Zone!!! “RBKZ” is a night where families in the community are invited to come out and enjoy a FREE Family Fun-Filled environment with paid admission to all remaining home basketball games. They offer several pre & post game activities that consist of FREE bounce house, face painting, crayola station, and free pictures with “Tex” the Tigers mascot. There are also free snacks for the kids. For further information contact Tamika Newman at 713-992-0732.

— The Houston Hoops will host the H-Town Classic basketball tournament April 17-19th. The tournament is open to boys 9 Under through 17 Under teams and girls 11 Under through varsity teams. This will be a live period for both Women’s and Men’s Division I coaches. Three game guarantee with all teams advancing to the championship round. The headquarters will be the state of the art Legends Sports Complex in the Woodlands. For more information contact, Dina at 713-524-3036.

— The Hoops will also host their Summer Prep Showcase, May 15-17th in Houston. This tournament is for 10U through 17U boys divisions and 10U through 17/18 girls divisions. Participants will be able to qualify for the BCI National Tournament in Oklahoma.

— WNBA Rookie of the Year and Los Angeles Sparks player Candace Parker is expecting her first child. Parker is presently in Chicago, Illinois, staying with her family as she prepares for the birth of her first child with her new husband, Sacramento Kings basketball player Shelden Williams. Parker, who eloped last November, will probably miss a part of the Sparks season which begins in May.

Sparks General Manager Penny Toler has mentioned that the baby will be due in early May. The 22-year old is excited about the new challenge. “First and foremost this is a great thing for my family,” Parker said. “I’m excited to be expanding my family and so is my husband.”

— The Houston Hoops will host a May Madness Classic on May 1-3, 2009. This tournament is being held for 10U through 17U boys divisions and 10U through 17/18U girls divisions.

— Schuman’s National Underclassmen Combines for boys grades 8-12 will start the first of many dates with a combine that will be held this weekend at Westfield High School. For more information contact

— The Houston National Summer Showcase tournament will take place July 3-5, 2009 for boys and girls ages 9U-13U and July 5-7,2009 for Boys and Girls ages 14U-17U.

— The Houston Rockets are tapping into Houston-area fans to find a home for the inaugural Direct Energy Driveway Challenge. The Challenge gives one lucky fan, along with friends and family, the opportunity to shoot hoops with Rockets players Shane Battier and Carl Landry. Working with Direct Energy, the official electricity provider to the Houston Rockets and Toyota Center, Battier and Landry are even giving up home-court advantage to the lucky contest winner, who will host the players in their own driveway. Registration is currently underway and ends on February 27th. The sweepstakes is open to all legal Texas residents who live within a 40-mile radius of Toyota Center and who are 21 years or older at the time of entry.

— The Rockets have also selected the University of Phoenix, a leader in higher education that offers associate’s bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degree programs to working professionals, as its premier education institution. To kick off the partnership, University of Phoenix will award a $2,000 scholarship to an exceptional member of the community who has demonstrated a commitment to their local community through leadership, volunteerism and/or professional development opportunities.

Christina Robinson Grochett, University of Phoenix-Houston Vice President and Campus Director will present the scholarship to a recipient during halftime on the basketball court at the February 26th Rockets home game. The “Black History Month” scholarship will provide a potential student with the opportunity to complete a degree program of their choice at University of Phoenix iva online, at one of the four Houston campus and learning center locations, or a unique blend of both.