COUNCIL BLUFFS, IA – The Iowa Western women's basketball team partnered with Southwest Iowa Special Olympics to host the annual basketball event on January 12th, 2019. The event included a variety of basketball skill stations including developmental dribbling, shooting, speed dribbling, and passing. Athletes competing ranged from grade school children to adults.
This year marks the 12th year that Iowa Western has hosted the event, which typically happens every year in mid-January. Head Coach Lindsey Vande Hoef is very passionate about this event, "We are very proud of our partnership with Southwest Iowa Special Olympics. This is a great opportunity for our student-athletes to get involved and give back to our community… I love to see our players work with the athletes and gain some perspective on what is really important in life."
Freshman Sommer Blakemore enjoyed the experience as well stating, "My favorite part of the day was to see how much fun they were having and how much they really loved competing." Freshman LaShawn Sweet helped with the awards ceremonies, "My favorite part was seeing their reactions they received their awards. You could tell they had been waiting all year for this event. Their smiles were contagious!"
The Reiver women's basketball team volunteered at multiple stations along with the help of Treynor High School basketball teams. Other student athletes from Iowa Western, including Iowa Western cheer team were present at the event to volunteer and help judge the cheerleading portion of the event.
Head Coach Lindsey Vande Hoef understand the importance of giving back to the community, especially at this time of the year. "Our team has been practicing for months, and after over 50 practice and 15 games sometimes we start to take our opportunity to compete for granted. Having this event helps remind our players what a great opportunity we have to compete. Special Olympics help inspire us to finish the year strong!"
The Reiver women will play their first conference game of the season tomorrow, January 19 against Northeast at 5:00 p.m. The team will look to expand their winning streak as they have won all 5 contests thus far in 2019.