With spring just around the corner, it’s time to start considering what summer vacation might look like in your household. Will you sending the kids to sleep-away or day camp? If you’re looking for a fun-filled, character-building week of the latter for your young athlete, don’t miss out on Dags Basketball, the New York-based hoops clinic founded by Guilderland native Steve Dagostino, which is returning to Saratoga Springs this July.
In its decade of existence, Dags Basketball has become a youth basketball sensation. “Since 2008, we’ve grown to work with close to 1,000 players per year and have worked with 40 high school teams,” says Dagostino, who played basketball at Guilderland High School before going pro in Europe. Trainers include Julie McBride, who starred at Syracuse and is now in the middle of a 13-year European career; and Shea Bromirski, who played for Dags Basketball holds year-round training sessions in New York and clinics in Massachusetts, Connecticut, Vermont and Florida. On a local level, Dags Basketball offers small group workouts, team training and camps/clinics in Schenectady, Albany and Saratoga. From July 9-13, Dags Basketball will put on a youth clinic at Saratoga Central Catholic School. “We love being in Saratoga,” Dagostino tells me. “Especially, our partnership with Spa Catholic. There’s nothing better than running a session and then walking five minutes downtown to grab a bite to eat.” Dagostino says that each camp location has its own distinct vibe. “The Saratoga vibe has always been players coming into the gym and working super hard.”
Dagostino intends to foster a good work ethic in his players. “To be honest, the best part of my job is seeing players come in and work their butts off, commit themselves to the process of getting better and then achieve their success,” he says. “Success is different for everyone; for some players it means being the best player in the state, and for some, it just means making a team,” he continues. “I really believe that Youth Sports builds character, and these kids are learning how to dedicate themselves to something and fight through failure and adversity.”
According to Dagostino, Saratoga’s basketball potential isn’t limited to its youth. He also believes the city could be a great training destination for professional players from all around the world: “I really believe that Saratoga can be the place that NBA and European players would want to come for a couple days during track season and train, hang out and enjoy the community!”