Jordan Jacobs, Sports Writer
Even if you don’t play basketball, Walnut Grove’s annual Gator Classic will have you on your feet, cheering! The Gator Classic basketball tournament is for the senior and junior boys’ basketball teams, and is held the 4th, 5th, and 6th of December. Every year, students look forward to seeing Walnut Grove’s most talked about athletic school rivals face off during lunchtime and P.E. classes. Walnut Grove’s games are scheduled intentionally during the school day so that the students get a chance to watch their school teams. The athletes and the students really enjoy this aspect of the tournament.
“It’s a really cool atmosphere and kids who haven’t seen the basketball team get to watch [us] play.” Daniel Stead
Because the tournament is held during the day, the players do miss a little bit of school, but nothing to keep them from stepping onto the court.
The tournament is a great way for the senior and junior boys teams to be exposed to great competition while providing an opportunity for the school to support its fellow athletes. Mr. Bergen, the head coach of both teams and tournament director, puts a lot of hard work and effort into prearranging everything so that the caliber of the teams coming to the tournament will challenge his own teams to the best of their ability.
“I organize everything and anything” Mr. Bergen
Mr. Bergen is part of the duo that makes the Gator Classic run smoothly;he is in charge of the athletes and Mr. Inkster is in charge of where the games take place. .
“My role in the Gator Classic is to make sure that the facility, the gym, benches, scoring area, and the upstairs coaches room is set up to showcase the team efficiently” Mr. Inkster
Yes, the Gator Classic is a school event that athletes and spectators alike can enjoy, but we also have to appreciate all the behind-the-scenes work the coaches put in to make the Gator Classic an entertaining Christmas tradition.