A little of this, a little of that …
• Opportunity was knocking and George Carle had a 5:30 flight to catch.
Did we mention that takeoff from T.F. Green Airport was at 5:30 in the morning? When you have the chance to play professional basketball, you make like a fast-break opportunity and run.
Now 10 years removed from his graduation from Central Falls High School, Carle is out to see if he can cash paychecks as a result of playing a game that’s near and dear. Last week saw the 27-year-old venture to the capital city of Guatemala for a four-game tryout that hopefully leads to a roster spot on a team located somewhere in the Central America region.
“The spring season is coming up and they’re looking for a handful of players to help out,” Carle said before his rendezvous with pro hoops in a foreign country.
Carle averaged a double-double in points and rebounds during the four-game trial run in Guatemala. The final game saw him stuff the stat sheet to the tune of 20 points, 12 rebounds and five assists. It’s a body of hard work that’s going to be difficult to ignore while Carle spends the coming days negotiating with perspective suitors.
“I like to think I’m capable of landing a contract,” Carle said.
In high school with the Warriors, Carle played close to the basket while teammates/good friends Rob Alers and Antonio Mena ruled the backcourt. During his four seasons at Vermont’s Lyndon State, he regularly stepped away from the rim and wound up averaging 10 or more points in three of his four seasons with the Hornets. Life as a wing player remained Carle’s forte during his 1½ seasons with the now-defunct Providence Sky Chiefs, a R.I.-based pro hoops entry that served as a chance for guys like Carle to possibly get noticed.
Listed at 6-foot-4, Carle after his time with the Sky Chiefs continued to network with people who played overseas. They all told him the same thing: he should be playing somewhere other than Rhode Island. One individual who’s firmly in Carle’s corner is Lamonte Thomas, a Providence native who after a standout college career at Johnson & Wales went on to become an overseas staple in Germany and Spain.
Since he doesn’t have an agent at this time, Carle plans to seek counsel from Thomas about finding a hoops destination that represents the best possible fit.
‘He’s one of the dudes who’s helped keep my dream alive. He believes I can play at a high level,” Carle said about the faith that Thomas has shown him.
Carle’s love of basketball brought him face-to-face with a new twist this past season, one that saw him serve as a first-time assistant coach with the Blackstone Valley Prep girls’ basketball team. Besides passing along his knowledge of the game, Carle had a gym available in an effort to stay sharp just per chance something arose.
Before the basketball-related trip to Guatemala could become a definite, Carle sought peace of mind that would only come from his longtime girlfriend Cynthia Cano. While Carle was in college, the couple had a son, Jacobb George Carle. Taking care of Jacobb, who turns seven this year, has always been a top priority for George. The last thing that George wanted Cynthia to think was that he would be saddling her with all the responsibilities.
“It gave me an extra boost,” George Carle said upon receiving Cynthia’s blessing, a vital piece to a basketball puzzle where all the pieces for this former C.F. hoopster seem to be falling into place.
• You could say that Cumberland’s Tyler Kolek adjusted just fine to his first prep school season with the St. George’s boys’ basketball program. Kolek was recently named 2018-19 MVP of the 16-team Independent School League.
• Coming up this Saturday at the Providence Career & Technical Academy field house is the fifth installment of the All About the Buckets charity event that doubles as an all-star showcase featuring some of the best boys’ basketball talent in the state and region.
The list of expected participants includes Kolek, two former Tolman High standouts in Tedrick Wilcox and Dyondre Dominguez, and DeMarr Langford, the younger brother of current Providence sophomore guard Makai.
The PCTA doors will open at 5:30 p.m. If you buy a ticket in advance, it’ll cost you $10. If you wait until the day of the event, the price to get inside will be $20. For more information, email CampErrol4@gmail.com.
• During the recently held NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis, Cumberland resident Jim Whalen took a bow as the Outstanding NFL Trainer of the Year. Whalen has been the head athletic trainer for the Patriots since 2002.
• Skating shifts for the Providence College women’s hockey team that’s heading to the Hockey East semifinals is Burrillville native Gianna Savastano. A sophomore who plays on the blue line for the Friars, Savastano has appeared in 35 games this season. She’s recorded five assists and owns a +7 plus/minus rating.
• Memo to high school basketball fans as we shift to the R.I. Open State Tournament: Don’t come out of the stands and onto the court. It’s a dangerous act that creates a tense environment that removes some of the shine from the spirit of competition. It’s not cool.
• Helping the Bryant baseball team take two of three games at Virginia Tech this past weekend was Cumberland High product Chris Wright. In the two wins, Wright recorded two saves and struck out five over two innings. Wright is now 3-for-3 in save chances this season.
• This column would have been longer, but it’s time to jump on a conference call and give a piece of my mind to Old Man Winter, who decided to wait until March, with less than a month to go before the start of the spring sports season, to get down with his snowy self. Talk about your bad timing.