Cash theft sets Pasco County youth basketball league back

PASCO COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) – Thirteen girls play on a brand-new basketball team, called the “Sky Lady Elite.”

Among other fundraisers on Saturday, the teens washed cars to pay for uniforms, tournament costs and to help parents who can’t afford the $500 league fee.skyelitecarwash

“We have nothing in Pasco County. We are starting a brand new team. We don’t even have basketballs,” said parent Nancy Williams.

Her daughter Breanna is on the team. All are facing an uphill struggle, after more than $1,200 vanished Monday.

“We’re doing everything we can to raise money, to have people steal money. It’s like you take two steps forward and now we’re back at square one,” said Williams.

Coach Tige Diggins feels awful. As he worked at his construction job in Wesley Chapel, somebody got into his unlocked truck and took the cash.

“It really sets you back when you lose that amount of money. Ya know, $1,200 is not a little amount of cash, so it’s gonna set the girls back,” said Diggins.

He didn’t report the theft until Wednesday, saying he got distracted by work.

Breanna Williams has a message for the heartless thief.

“You stole from, like, girls that actually, like, worked hard for it. And just like, hopefully, they know what’s going on and hopefully feel bad about it,” she said.

The missing cash means the team may have to bow out of upcoming tournaments, because they don’t have the money to enter.

The coach suspects a worker at the construction site took the money.

He plans to dip into his own pocket to keep the team going.

A Pasco Sheriff’s Office spokesperson questions why it took so long to report the theft.

Coach Diggins says he did so at the urging of a parent. Diggins hopes the thief is riddled with guilt and gives the money back.

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