The SF Bay Area Pro-Am is a staple of Bay Area basketball, and it’s back after a two-year hiatus due to the pandemic. Naturally, that means that I’m back at Kezar Gym in The City to take it all in.
When I can, of course. I live in the North Bay. But I work in San Francisco 1-2 days a week on a hybrid schedule. On Thursday, I stopped by to watch Bay City and Bay Pride battle for sole possession of third place as the season winds down and gets set for the run to the playoffs.
Bay City notched a comeback win, led by Erik Kenney of Cal State Bakersfield and Kenny Woodard, a former standout at Terra Linda High School in Marin County. Woodard plays professionally in Puerto Rico, and Kenney is a native of Fairfield and who attended Sacramento High School.
Bay Pride was ahead 50-40 at the half and held on to its lead until the fourth quarter, led by Isa Silva of Stanford and former Santa Clara hooper P.J. Pipes. But in the end, Bay City triumphed, 88-78. Bay City’s athleticism took over as the game went on, as a player I couldn’t identify (unfortunately) delivered a couple rim-rattling dunks.
Some other Bay Area ballers who showed up to put on a free show at Kezar include City College of San Francisco’s Malcolm Steadman and Napa native Sasha French, who each play for Bay City. Bay Pride missed the presence of Oakland native Cam Oliver, who has had a taste of NBA action with the Rockets and the Hawks. But it’s normal for A-listers to miss a bit of action at the SF Pro-Am. Ideally, he’ll be in the lineup the next time out.
There are likely more Bay Area ballers that I couldn’t identify, but with incomplete rosters, no stats, and no public address announcer, information is hard to come by. If you’d like to help in any of those areas, contact league director Jon Greenberg. Though it’s vital that you attend every game if you commit to helping out.
Each squad entered action with a 2-2 record, trailing first-place SF City and second-place East Bay, led by SF Pro Am legend Jovan Harris. After Thursday’s action, Bay City is in third place and poised to make the playoffs. The postseason gets underway August 1-2, with a five-seed vs. second-seed matchup, followed by a battle between the fourth- and fifth-place teams. So both Bay City and Bay Pride are in a position to fight for this season’s championship.
The BASH plans to be there, but no promises. I’ve attended games at the SF Pro-Am for a decade now, so I’ll be there if making it to Kezar is at all possible. In the meantime, here’s some video I took of the game, though I regrettably didn’t capture the rim-rattling dunks. I encourage you to check out the action in person, however, as the games are free and always a good show.