Breaker Staff Writer – 6/7/2009
The Santa Barbara Breakers professional basketball team boasts of five local stars who are making significant contributions on and off the floor.
Shantay Legans is the “Dean” of the group, having played with the Breakers for each of the three seasons that the Breakers have existed on the central coast. Legans, 6’0 point guard and the “Pied Piper” with local children attending the games, shares his basketball duties with a full-time position in the executive offices of Carls Jr. Restaurants, located in Carpinteria. Having played professionally in Holland and Germany, Legans is now experiencing life in the real world yet still gets his hoop “highs” leading the Breakers on the fastbreak and being a vocal leader on the bench and in the lockerroom. The Dos Pueblos High School graduate played collegiately at Cal-Berkley and Fresno State.
Santiago Aguirre is the grassroots consumate of “basketball in Santa Barbara”. Sant played hoops at Santa Barbara High School; was an All-American at Westmont College and has been playing professionally in Mexico the past two seasons. A great role model for local youth, Aguirre aspires to someday work with kids either in a probational role or at Boys/Girls Clubs or in the school system. When his playing days are over, look to see him working actively in the Santa Barbara community. But for now, he will display his ability to defend, score and zip great passes to his teammates.
Josh Merrill, a graduate of UCSB is the epitome of Leadership. Now a poised, confident father and into his early 30’s, Merrill has made an immediate impact on Breakers Basketball, injecting his “do the right thing” attitude, taking no shortcuts to accomplish whatever the goal is. He was a major part in the Breakers unblemished, unbreakable 2008 season, helping carve out an 18-0 season and the WCBL title. They don’t come any sharper and caring on and off the court than Mr. Merrill and the Breakers are thankful that he has been wearing #34 while sporting a 24-1 record when he is suited up.
Tito May was an unknown product to some in the local community but he has been blazing a trail on the basketball court. Having grown up in Jackson, Mississippi, Mays has followed the “Dale Carnegie Route” making friends on and off the court faster than you can say, Breakers Nation. The 6’1 speedster demonstrates lightning quick agility and occasional above the rim play while he continues to build his resume on the basketball radar screen. Good days are ahead for Tito but one thing is for sure, he will never be short on making friends and being sighted on the basketball courts of Santa Barbara.
The latest edition and addition to the Breakers has been the welcomed sight of Lompoc native, Joel Smith. Having already developed an impression about his game back in his high school days, Smith went on to play collegiately at the University of Washington and Chaminade University. Bigger, stronger, quicker and wiser since his high school days, Smith is now ready to take on the professional scene and has the talents to take it by storm. In his first game with the Breakers, he rung up 21 points, 7 rebounds, 3 steals and climaxed the contest with 2 thunderous dunks, one of a missed free throw and the other off penetration. Stay tuned to the “Joel Smith Show”. You will be hearing alot more about him in the future.