WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. -- The County Center had it all Friday night: the Westchester Knicks -- including an actual New York Knickerbocker -- cheerleaders, fans, music and plenty of Entergy.
Yes, Entergy, the electric power company that donated basketball tops as sponsors of "Jersey Night" to benefit a local non-profit organization Today's Students, Tomorrow’s Teachers. Today's Students, Tomorrow's Teachers is based at 333 Westchester Ave., White Plains.
To the delight of youngsters seeking autographs, the New York Knicks announced earlier Friday that they "assigned" rookie forward Cleanthony Early to the Westchester Knicks, which is part of the NBA Development League. It marked the first "reassignment" downward that benefits the Westchester team.
Early didn't disappoint the 2,000 fans. Playing most of the game, he was the Knicks' leading scorer against the Sioux Falls Skyforce, with a total of 20 points.
With 15 seconds left in the game, Early made a two-handed jam to pull the Knicks within eight points -- 107 to 99. Sioux Falls defeated Westchester, however, 109 to 99.
The Skyforce defeated Westchester again on Saturday night, 105-80, upping its season record to 17-11. The pair of losses dropped the Knicks record to 8-20.
Early led the team defensively as well, with 10 rebounds and two steals. He led the team with a double-double again in Saturday's game, scoring 17 points while snagging 12 rebounds.
Some ticketholders thought they might get free wings due to the 100-point game. But the offer is for 100 points and a Knicks' win.
Before the game, Entergy's Dave Cooke and Deborah Fay, senior specialist for governmental affairs at Entergy -- which operates a nuclear power plant at Indian Point -- handed a $5,000 check to Bettye H. Perkins, founder and chief executive officer of Today's Students, Tomorrow's Teachers (TSTT).
According to its mission statement, TSTT recruits, mentors and trains culturally diverse and economically challenged students from high school through college and helps place them as effective teachers and committed leaders to strengthen schools and communities.
Since opening in 1994, TSTT has grown from seven students at a Westchester high school to nearly 880 participants: 430 high school students in four states, 350 college students nationwide and 106 teachers in nine states who serve as role models in their communities. TSTT is partnered with 23 colleges that assist by offering at least a 50 percent scholarship to prospective teachers.
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