Pony adapted basketball team plays in the Unified basketball tournament


Photo by Maya Disher

Mason Mora-Clark dribbles the ball down the court during the Unified basketball game.

Aidan Primeau and Oren Hamilton

Special Olympics Minnesota hosted the annual adapted basketball tournament on Feb. 3 at Eagan Community Center. Stillwater’s adapted basketball team participated for their second year. 

Throughout the year, the adapted basketball team prepared for the tournament, practicing once every week on Wednesdays. The varsity basketball team practiced with the team throughout the year, teaching the players new skills. The varsity team has shown more interest in practicing with the adapted team again even though the season is over. 

“We’ve practiced all year and had the varsity boys basketball team practice with us… The varsity team has a lot of interest in practicing with us again, even though we didn’t participate in the state tournament,” senior Tom Blair said. 

The tournament hosted by Special Olympics Minnesota at Eagan had a competitive edge, giving the athletes a chance to experience competitiveness and take charge of their game. The athletes were able to be leaders for their teams. 

“Let the athletes take the wheel and guide them when needed, but they were in control the whole game,” Blair said.  

The main goal of the tournament is to include. Inclusion is the purpose of these tournaments, helping people who are put at a disadvantage, to feel included and involved.

“I think we had the best inclusion, we had a lot of our athletes shooting instead of our partners, our partners really had a grasp of what inclusion really means in an athletic setting,” Blair said.