Morning Star Staff
They ran-till-they-dropped and raised some money for local athletics, a scholarship and the Vernon Jubilee Hospital Foundation.
High school basketball alumni representing every school in the district gathered at the Vernon Secondary Panther Pit for the 2nd annual Greater Vernon Alumni Basketball Tournament.
This year, the two-day showcase which ended Tuesday night, featured 12 men’s teams and three women’s teams.
In the men’s field, it was the Maroons 2.0 representing Fulton that toppled the Seaton 2003/04 squad 77-68 in the championship match.
It is the second straight year a Fulton entry has claimed top prize.
The third-place game pitted last year’s champs, the Oldest Maroons (Fulton), against the Hawks (Fulton) — the Oldest Maroons coming away victorious 51-45.
The Kal Lakers took home a portion of the proceeds for their school by edging the Hooked on Sonics team from Seaton 53-50 in an exciting consolation final.
Mayor Akbal Mund and school superintendent Joe Rogers squared off in a charity shootout at halftime in the championship game Tuesday.
Each shooter was given two minutes to score as many points as possible from different spots on the floor.
Rogers went first and sank 40 points. Mayor Mund, who was wearing a LeBron James Cleveland Cavaliers jersey, finished with 38 points, narrowly missing a buzzer-beater that would have given him the victory.
Mund competed on behalf of Easter Seals Camps and Rogers for the Vernon Jubilee Hospital Foundation. Mund went to high school in New Westminster, Rogers in Vancouver.
“The real winner, however, is Vernon Jubilee Hospital that will receive a donation from the tournament,” said tournament organizer Jeff Samuel. “I couldn’t be more happy with how everything went this year.
“This is more than just a basketball tournament and fundraiser, it’s about bringing the community together and creating lasting memories with old and new friends — and the fact we can give something back at the same time is pretty cool too.”
This year, the tournament is set to give back nearly $4,500 to local athletics and charity — nearly doubling last year’s efforts.
“This year’s tournament was bigger and better than last year and we want to continue that trend next year,” said tournament organizer John Oh. “We couldn’t have done it without the help of our major sponsors Concept Physiotherapy, Kal Tire and Tolko as well as all the businesses who provided services and donations to our raffle.”
As this annual tournament continues to grow, organizers will be looking to the community for support next year.
Businesses that wish to participate or anyone wanting to volunteer are encouraged to contact organizers by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.