Students fall to faculty in charity game

Nathan Bottiger, Editor-in-Chief

Pitt-Johnstown’s faculty and staff team beat the students’ team April 9 in the annual Make-A-Wish charity game.

The students led the teachers 17-16, ending the first quarter, but the faculty/staff took the lead at the end of the half, 32-26.

The faculty/staff held their lead through the third and fourth quarters, finishing the game, winning by seven points 54-47.

Organizers accepted donations upon entering rather than an admission fee.

Donors received a raffle ticket, which entered them into a door prize drawing for a set of Beats by Dre headphones.

Supporters were called from the stands between quarters for other contests in which they had the chance to win coupons for free subway sandwiches.

Between the first and second and the third and fourth quarters, two individuals faced off one on each side of the court.

During these competitions, the competitors had to make various shots. They began with a layup and gradually increased in distance until the final sandwich-winning shot, a half-court shot.

Participants needed to finish the four shots within one minute to win the sandwich coupon.

During halftime, the announcer called upon a number of supporters from the stands to take half-court shots. If they made it within two shots, they received a sandwich coupon.

The only winner came from a member of the students’ team, senior women’s basketball player Grace Hyland.

Senior Zack McQueen plays golf for Pitt-Johnstown, but took some time from practice to play in the charity game.

McQueen said he was asked to participate by the Student Athletic Advisory Committee, a committee for which he is also a member.

“It was fun,” he said. “I haven’t played basketball in a while, and it was fun to play with other athletes.”

McQueen said he played basketball in high school, so he didn’t feel completely helpless, despite the differences between the rolling greens of golf and the hardwood basketball court.

“I was a little out of my comfort zone.”

McQueen said he enjoyed playing with other student athletes on campus, giving him the opportunity to make connections with players from other sports.

“I had the opportunity to meet some of the soccer players and play with the basketball players that I already know.”

McQueen said this is the first time since attending Pitt-Johnstown he was selected to participate in the game.

“I thought it would be a cool opportunity.”

He said the charity aspect of the game also made an additional impact on him.

“Make-a-Wish is always a good charity and one that athletes love to support.”

Sophomore soccer player Emily Brady was one of the student athletes who organized the event.

Brady said two athletes from each sport volunteered to play for the students’ team. She said the faculty team contained members that have played in previous games, but there were some new additions to the team.

The game was operated and officiated by current players of the men’s and women’s basketball teams.

Brady said she felt the players had a fun with the light-hearted event and felt good about supporting a charitable organization.

“It wasn’t a competitive atmosphere,” she said.

“At one point in the game, you could find players that start on the university’s basketball team walking and laughing on the court, and, at another moment, that same player was dunking the ball and hanging from the rim.”

Brady said the event raised $830.

“I would have liked some more students to come and support the players as well as the Make-A-Wish fund so hopefully we can get a better turn out next year.”v