News From Terre Haute, Indiana

Local & Bistate

March 25, 2013

‘March Madness at its best’ comes to Valley

Men’s Special Olympics basketball tourney wraps up at ISU

TERRE HAUTE — It was “March Madness at its best,” shouted a fan during the last minutes of the championship game between Jay and Clark counties at the Men’s Special Olympics State Basketball Tournament at Indiana State University on Sunday.

In true March Madness style, the game came down to the final seconds. A steal with 20 seconds left sealed victory for the Jay County Panthers.

Coach Alex Dunn, celebrated with his team as it received its gold medals a few minutes later.

“This was so much fun for me and the guys,” Dunn said. This was one of the toughest games the team has faced all year, he said. “You gotta love the sportsmanship” from both sides, Dunn said.

A few feet away, players from Clark County, which is in southeastern Indiana, accepted their silver medals. While the players were clearly disappointed, their coach, Bob Synder, was full of pride for his players.

“They played extremely well today,” Synder said. “It went right down to the wire. I’m just proud as the dickens of them.”

In all, teams from more than 40 counties, including Vigo, were represented in the 2013 Men’s Basketball Championship. The teams competed in sectional tournaments to earn the right to play in Terre Haute this weekend, said Dave Breen, director of sports management for the Special Olympics of Indiana.

Gold medals were awarded in nine divisions, he said.

Threatening weather sent several teams home early, but there was still plenty of tough competition Sunday afternoon. Fans filled folding chairs around several courts while players showed excellent skills passing, shooting and dribbling.

That high level of skill is a surprise to many people who first watch Special Olympics basketball, Breen said. “That stereotype is quickly broken,” he said. “We have some athletes.”

In another game, coach Randy Baehl led his Vanderburgh County Bobcats squad to a gold medal victory over the Howard County Wildcats in another hard-fought matchup.

“We play hard. We hustle. We work hard in practices and we have fun,” Baehl said after the game.

Coaching for the Special Olympics is like nothing else, said Clark County coach Synder as he put away his gear after his team’s heart-breaking loss in the final game Sunday afternoon.

“I’ve coached different sports for more than 20 years,” Synder said after getting a hug from one of his players. “There’s nothing like coaching Special Olympics. I love my kids.”

ISU, the birthplace of the Special Olympics in Indiana, has hosted the Men’s Special Olympics State Basketball Tournament since 1971. The university also hosts the annual Special Olympics Summer Games.

For more information on Indiana Special Olympics, visit the website at www.soindiana.org.

Reporter Arthur Foulkes can be reached at 812-231-4232 or arthur.foulkes@

tribstar.com


 

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local & Bistate
Latest News
TribStar.com Poll
AP Video
New York Auto Show Highlights Latest in Car Tech Captain of Sunken South Korean Ferry Apologizes Crew Criticized Over Handling of Ferry Disaster Diplomats Reach Deal to Ease Tensions in Ukraine Malaysia Plane: Ocean Floor Images 'Very Clear' Sparks Fly With Derulo and Jordin on New Album Raw: Royal Couple Visits Australia Mountains Raw: Two Lucky Kids Get Ride in Popemobile Agreement Reached to Calm Ukraine Tensions Raw: Bulgarian Monastery Dyes 5000 Easter Eggs Passengers Abuzz After Plane Hits Swarm of Bees Obama Hopeful on Ukraine, Will Watch Russians Raw: Pro-Russian Militants Killed on Base Flamingo Frenzy Ahead of Zoo Construction Raw: Pope Francis Performs Pre-easter Ritual Chelsea Clinton Is Pregnant New York Auto Show Highlights Latest in Car Tech U.S. Sending Nonlethal Aid to Ukraine Military Raw: Blast at Tennessee Ammunition Plant Kills 1 Small Reactors Could Be Future of Nuclear Energy
NDN Video
Man Accuses 'X-Men' Director Bryan Singer of Sexually Abusing Him As a Teenager Lea Michele & Naya Rivera Feuding? Don't Be A Tattletale: Bad Bullying Tips For Students Jabari Parker declares for the NBA draft Singing Nun Belts Out Cyndi Lauper Swim Daily, Throwback Thursday The trillest thoughts on marijuana "RHOA" Star Charged With Battery Grizzly Bears Get Snowy Birthday Party Weatherman draws forecast when another technical glitch strikes WGN Elizabeth Olsen's Sexy Shoot Bay Area Teen Gets Prom Date With Help From 'Breaking Bad' Star Boston Bomb Scare Defendant Appears in Court Behind The Tanlines Jersey Strong Part 1 WATCH: Women Fight To Marry Prince Harry! Jenny McCarthy Engaged to "New Kid" Kate and Will Land in Oz O’Reilly Launches Preemptive Strike Against CBS Pixar Unveils Easter Eggs From its Biggest Movies Baby Sloths Squeak for Their Cuddle Partners in Adorable Video
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
  • -

     

    March 12, 2010

activity