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September 30, 2023

Young South County hooper scores big in national competition

Local girl places third in Hoop Shoot event in Chicago

Audrina Salinas is an avid athlete who loves to play basketball and softball.

The South County resident said she loves “everything” about basketball, and practices every day to improve her skill.

Practice makes perfect, as the saying goes, and all that hard work has certainly paid off for Audrina.

The 9-year-old recently placed third in the Elks National Hoop Shoot Finals in Chicago, Ill., representing the Gilroy Elks Lodge.

Guy Bostock, who heads up the Hoop Shoot for the local region, said Audrina won five different competitions to earn a spot in the national finals, competing in the 8-9-year-old girls division against children from across the country.

Audrina sank 22 out of 25 free throws, and in the tie-breaking shoot-off, made four out of five shots.

Bostock said Audrina “really took off this year,” dominating her competitions en route to the finals.

“It’s amazing,” he said, noting that the Elks National Foundation paid for all the travel expenses for Audrina and her family for each competition.

During a dinner event on May 24 at the Elks Lodge on the Hill, the Elks honored Audrina and presented her with trophies.

Audrina’s family and friends joined in the celebration, including her parents Ricky and Angelica.

“We’re really proud of the hard work she puts in,” Ricky Salinas said.

Erik Chalhoub
Erik Chalhoub joined Weeklys as an editor in 2019. Prior to his current position, Chalhoub worked at The Pajaronian in Watsonville for seven years, serving as managing editor from 2014-2019.

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