HANOVER, Mass. – Paul Calobrisi was as perfect as you can be shooting a basketball for two straight. But he still wasn’t completely satisfied with his performance.
“I’m happy with the way I started, but I kind of got cold at the end,” the recent Westwood High graduate and hoop standout said Saturday.
While taking the title at the second annual Shot For Life Challenge, hosted by A Shot For Life at the University Sports Complex, Calobrisi shot 87.8 percent from the field in the two-hour long shooting competition.
“I’m happy that I pulled through and won,” said Calobrisi, who will study at UMass-Lowell next year, forgoing continuing his basketball career. “There’s a lot of great shooters her and I’m proud to be in the same company as them.”
The event, which features the top boys’ and girls’ shooters from across Massachusetts high school basketball, is more than just the physical challenge for its participants. The shooters also are required to raise funds for brain cancer research at Children’s Hospital in Boston as well as the Dr. Curry Research Laboratory at Massachusetts General Hospital.
A Shot For Life reported more than $27,000 in proceeds from the event, doubling the figure from last year’s event.
Calobrisi, who was shooting at a 92 percent clip through the first 45 minutes, outdueled a field of 16 competitors to claim the title, outpacing Sandwich’s Joey Downes (2nd, 84.7 percent) and Duxbury’s Jake Foote (3rd, 79.5 percent).
Calobrisi became the second event winner, following Walpole’s Scott Arsenault, who presented the championship trophy along with A Shot For Life founder Mike Slonina.
“My mom will find a nice spot for it,” Calobrisi said of the trophy.
Rebels dominance: Another addition to this year’s Shot For Life Challenge was a girls’ competition. Following in the footsteps of Arsenault a year ago, Walpole sophomore Kelly Fogarty became the second Rebel to win a title.
Fogarty knocked down 1,108 of 1,278 shots on the day.
“I was just trying to have fun, I wasn’t worried about winning because I have next year,” she said.
Fogarty, whose older brother was in the same class as Arsenault, conferred with last year’s boys’ champion in preparation for Saturday.
“We would all work out together since we were young, so it’s kind cool that we both won with him winning last year,” Fogarty added.
Along with the girls’ competition, the Shot For Life Challenge also added a slam dunk competition at the end of the day, highlighting some high-flying talent from across the state. It too was won by an underclassmen, as Cardinal Spellman rising junior Nick George wowed the judge, including a string of perfect 10 scores with a second-round dunk, leaping over the back of a Cardinals teammate.