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Both music and basketball have been a big part of Wrentham native Ayla Brown’s life and now they are brought together thanks to the front office of the National Basketball Association’s Philadelphia 76’ers. Brown is the official singer of the National Anthem at all of the team’s games throughout this season. “It’s the most perfect combination I could ever ask for,” Brown says enthusiastically. “The National Anthem means so much to me and I get to watch basketball. It’s perfect.”

Brown’s singing abilities were brought to the public’s attention in 2005 when she was in the top 16 of American Idol, but her talents extended beyond the stage all the way to the basketball court. She was a star player for Noble and Greenough High School and, after her stint on American Idol, she went off to play Division I Women’s Basketball at Boston College for four years. Her love of basketball started with her father U.S. Senator Scott Brown who is known as an avid fan and player. But a big contributing factor to her basketball passion and success was the introduction to the game she received at the after school program started by retired Wrentham Elementary School teacher Tom Stone. “My first year playing basketball was with Mr. Stone in fifth grade,” Brown says. “Besides my father if it wasn’t for him, I would never love basketball.”

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