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The Daily Star, Oneonta, N.Y., Whitney Bashaw column

The Daily Star - 4/6/2018

April 06--Springbrook is hosting its sixth annual Springbrook Special Olympics Basketball Invitational on Saturday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Syracuse University Basketball alumni Roosevelt Bouie and Dale Shackleford will be special referees for the event, according to a media release from Springbrook. Bouie and Shackleford visited Springbrook in September for a basketball clinic.

The event will be split between Springbrook's two campuses: the Main Campus in Milford and its Community Campus in Oneonta.

The eight teams will have athletes from Broome County, Onondaga County, Saratoga and Edmeston, as well as Springbrook's varsity and junior varsity teams. Because of the high volume of competitors, the teams will be split into two divisions. The teams will compete in a round-robin style. There will also be a special section of "Skills Athletes," according to the release, where players will demonstrate their basketball proficiency in two separate rounds.

"The tournament gives athletes the opportunity to showcase the amazing talents they possess. They take so much pride in what they do, and it is extremely rewarding to be a part of something like this," Nicole Valentine-Sokolowski, a special education teacher and Springbrook's athletic coordinator, said in the release.

Division 1 will compete at Springbrook's Main Campus and Division 2 teams will be at its Community Campus.

An opening ceremony will take place at 9 a.m. at Springbrook's Main Campus gymnasium. Division 2 games will begin at 10 a.m.

Award ceremonies will be held at the respective locations following the tournaments.

Springbrook's Special Olympics Program is completely donor-funded and supports basketball, soccer and track and field.

Springbrook provides at-home care, residential and educational services, day services, and clinical, therapeutic, and behavioral supports to over 1,000 people with developmental disabilities from across New York state.

Whitney Bashaw, staff writer, can be reached at (607) 441-7218 or . Follow her on Twitter @DS_WhitneyB .


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