By Amanda Hatfield
BREVARD -- When they're not busy patrolling the streets and fighting crime, one group of Sheriff's deputies trade in their police uniforms for a different kind of attire.
On March 3, the Brevard County Sheriff's Office basketball team won the seventh annual Orlando Magic "Guns and Hoses" Basketball Tournament, at the Amway Center in Orlando. The champions' win gave the team back-to-back titles -- the first awarded in 2012.
"Our basketball team has competed in the tournament three times," said Deputy Maria Fernez. "Our first time was in 2011, and we've gone each year since."
The nationally ranked BCSO team fended off competitors from Coleman Federal Corrections and Orange County Corrections twice on route to the championship.
"Our BCSO team is ranked nationally in the World Police and Fire Games Handbook," Deputy Fernez said. "In 2011, we competed in the World Police and Fire Games in New York City, finishing third in the world and first overall in the United States."
While competing in the World Police and Fire Games, the BCSO dethroned powerhouses, such as the Los Angeles Police Department and the Fire Department of New York.
"Our only loss was to Athens, Greece, Fire Department," Deputy Fernez added.
The nine-member squad, led by head coach Retired Lt Greg Buttrick, compete in various events throughout the year, such as the Harlem Ambassadors game, NFL player Anquan Bouldin's Q-Fest and Florida Police and Fire Games.
In regard to his team's success two years in a row, Lt. Buttrick said in a press release, "I was very pleased with our teams' effort as they defended their title and now have back-to-back championship trophies."
Corrections Deputy Carl Jenkins was named the Most Valuable Player in this year's "Guns and Hoses" Basketball Tournament.
"Deputy Jenkins was named MVP for his overall performance," Deputy Fernez said. "He has the ability to make textbook NBA three-point shots look like they are lay-ups."
As Deputy Jenkins lead his team to the championship, he hit seven three-pointers in the first two games.
"I am proud of how well our team played together...to win the championship for the second year in a row," Brevard County Sheriff Wayne Ivey said in a press release. "I also appreciate the tremendous fan-support our team received from the many co-workers, who came to the game to support our players."
For more information about the Brevard County Sheriff's Office basketball team, visit www.BrevardSheriff.com.