Three of the starters on the Churchill boys basketball team have literally been playing together their whole lives.
The last names of senior Alexander Estrada, senior Aaron Estrada, and sophomore Andrew Estrada are no coincidence. They’re all brothers starting for the Chargers.
And even though they’re family and teammates, they still argue over who the best player is. Ask them the same question and you get three different answers.
They’ve even got similar numbers: 21, 22, and 23.
“I think it just worked out that way,” head coach Brad Lacey said. “It’s easy to write down in the scorebook.
The situation has other advantages too.
“It helps a lot. We know exactly where we’re going to be. We’ve been playing with each other since we were little,” Aaron said.
“They always know what the right thing to do is,” Andrew added. “They always put me in good situations.”
“There’s certain things that we might know and we might talk about that only us three would understand,” Alex said.
It’s easy for mom to be supportive. Some parents have to split their time between their kids’ games. But Maureen Estrada gets to cheer on all three at the same time in the same game.
“We started them out young. They were, I think, 3 [years old] when they had a ball in their hand,” she said. “I think before they could walk, we built a basketball court in our backyard. So it was just meant to be.”
Mom says that two seniors were very welcoming when the youngest made the starting five. But she would’ve stepped in if they hadn’t.
At Churchill, basketball truly is a family affair.