Back And Better Than Ever

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Fall athletics are usually filled with touchdowns and cross country meets. However, thanks to basketball coach Scotty Williams, basketball was able to make a pre-season appearance, and the court was reclaimed by alumni players.

Saturday, Sept. 26 the first annual alumni basketball game took place. Players from any past season were allowed to team up and face off.

Coach Scotty Williams had the idea of the alumni game by gathering inspiration from his high school, Rosewood.

“The biggest barrier was contacting the players. Facebook was fantastic for that because I was able to find a lot of them there and just ask them, catch up with them and ask them how they’re doing,” Coach Williams said.

According to Scott Chesnutt, class of 2015 graduate, Coach Williams did a little more than just catching up.

“I decided to play in the game because Coach Williams contacted me and told me about it. He basically begged me to come back,” Chesnutt said.

It may have been months since the last basketball season ended, but these alumni still had their confidence in tact,

“Coach asked a good superstar to come back, so I just had to come back and show off the talent,” Cameron Williams, class of 2015 graduate said.

Players kept the competition friendly with teasing jokes.

“I played amazing as usual. I just graduated, came back and was basically the best on my team. [I was] better than Cameron, so I’m satisfied with my performance,” Chesnutt said.

Coach Williams wants to make this event annual with a few changes to benefit other programs additional to the basketball department.

“Next year, I would like to partner with a charity or another event here at the school to bring in some more people and let the money go to some different places,” said Coach Williams. “I wanted to bring in dance or the cheerleaders but the plans didn’t fall through in time. I would love to see that happen next year.”

Though the game brings in revenue, it’s purpose is to reunite old students.

“It was really heartwarming to see old coaches and old players back, so that’s the reason I hope it happens every year,” said Coach Williams.

What made the game memorable was a game changing call by the referee and history teacher, Joseph Worley.

“Black [shirts] had an advantage until it was revealed that they had broken a key rule in the rulebook about substitutions,” Coach Williams said. “So, white [shirts] was given 20 points to tie the game and then white [shirts] won the game in the end with a last minute shot. The final score was 86-85.”

Win or lose, the game was not about the final score.
“Honestly, they don’t show up expecting they’re going to run great offense or be impressive. Everybody got to laugh, smile and enjoy themselves,” Coach Williams said. “Big guys like to shoot threes, little guys like to try to dunk. It was a lot of fun to watch.”