The inaugural Unified Basketball League had their last two games of the season on Monday, Mar. 25 against Newbury Park High School and Westlake High School. Thousand Oaks High School students joined in the stands during both games and showed their support for the 15 team players and the Sparkle cheerleaders, a special needs cheer and dance group.
Although they lost their first game against Newbury, Sheldon, a player on the TOHS unified basketball team, mentions that he really liked playing in the game, while Aiden, another player on the Unified Basketball team, says that he looks forward to future games and would want play again. Making a comeback, TOHS won 36 to 12 on their second game against Westlake High School. However, the players cared less about the score and more about having a good time.
Mrs. Cecil, the main coach and a special needs teacher, says that the new Unified Basketball program will “[allow the kids] to experience more of the things that the schools have available”.
Sheldon has experienced being “part of the Thousand Oaks High School ASB”, becoming a Sparkles cheerleader and now, a player on the new TOHS Unified Basketball team.
In hopes to expanding the program to other sports, Mrs. Cummings, another coach and special needs teacher, says that “[they’re] working on [it] next year”. She continues to explain that kickball, soccer, tennis and track are possible options for increasing the program in future years.
There are high hopes of expanding the program and reaching out to other schools and districts so there are more games to play during the season.