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SAAC holds greatest practice ever

February 24, 2012

Dan Nolan/ Sports Information - Soccer’s Samantha Barranco (right) and softball’s Lauren Bergstresser (back left) help assist a Special Olympian during the Greatest Practice Ever. This is the fourth annual practice that SAAC has held at Monmouth College.

On Saturday, Feb. 12, the Fighting Scots held the fourth annual Greatest Practice Ever.

The Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) held this event for the area basketball Special Olympians. The event was a success with 20 Special Olympian participants and 30 Monmouth College student athletes.

SAAC members along with other teammates collaborated together to teach the fundamentals of basketball.

The basketball fundamental stations included passing, rebounding, shooting, defense and ball handling. The Olympians stay at each station for four to five minutes, and each Fighting Scot team takes one station.

After they have hit all the stations, the Olympians play a scrimmage game where the SAAC members assist them during the scrimmage, so they can put to test the skills they have been working on.

The Olympians performed at halftime of each of the men’s and women’s game on Feb. 15 against Illinois College.

There are two Special Olympian teams that participate in the practice: one is a high school team while the other is an adult team.

“I teach adapted physical education here at Monmouth and I work a lot with the Special Olympics in the area,” said SAAC advisor Melissa Bittner. “I think this a great opportunity for our student athletes to get involved with something like this.”

SAAC also helps with other various Special Olympic events during the year. “Spread the word to end the word” is another event that SAAC sponsors along with helping at the regional track and field meet at Sunny Lane.

“It’s a really rewarding experience,” Bittner said. “It’s a lot of fun to work with Special Olympians from the area. They’ve got a lot of enthusiasm, a lot of love for the game so it’s not only a great experience for them but also a great experience for the Monmouth College athletes that get to participate as well.”

Kelsey Beshears
Sports Editor

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