An excited crowd of students filled the Burr gymnasium seats last Wednesday night to show support for their fellow Bison in the midst of Springfest for UGSA’s annual Truth and Service basketball game. With music playing and the crowd engaging activities, Howard’s school spirit was in full effect.
The game also included a Procter and Gamble (P&G) Stem leaders $10,000 scholarship prize for top diverse students in STEM focused curriculum who will bring new perspectives to P&G. The prize was awarded to Trevor Jones, a junior engineering major.
Students played for the Truth team, blue jersey, versus Service team, white jersey. In the first quarter, both teams came out strong on both the offensive and defensive end. The biggest play of the night occurred in the first quarter, as Service player Zach Royster took a fast break to the hoop and flushed an electrifying one-handed dunk on two opposing defenders.
People in the stands stood to their feet to show support in awe with the score after the first quarter, 20-17 with Service in the lead. During the transition into the second quarter, fellow Bison competed in a competitive lay up relay race. Students from the crowd cheered the students on as they ran across the court to see who hit the free throw first.
Midway through the second quarter, the Service team began separating. The team hit deep threes and played solid defense making it difficult for the Truth team to find a rhythm. Turnovers also hurt the Truth team all night.
The halftime show featured a basketball knockout game with students in the crowd being chosen to participate.
Zach Royster, a freshman finance major and a player for team Service, talked about how he felt after the play of the night.
“It felt great to be on that side of the interaction. When I went to the games this year as a fan, I would be someone supporting and rooting from the stands whenever there was an electrifying play,” Royster said,“Being on the receiving end of that support is on another level and just gives you that boost of confidence while playing.”
In the second half, it was the same story. The Truth team struggled to produce offensively and was overwhelmed by the Service team’s offensive prowess. The Service team exposed gaps in the paint with slashing plays and created turnover after turnover for the Truth team. At the end of the third quarter, the final score was 74-55 with the Service team in the lead.
One player for the Truth team stood out every chance he got the ball. Ahmaz Atias, a senior computer science major, found ways to score effortlessly for the Truth team and ended the game scoring 24 points. From getting to the free throw line to knocking down contested three-pointers, Ahmaz was dominating on the court.
“I was trying to do everything possible. I know it was just a game for fun but I hate losing so I was down with doing whatever to win,” Ahmaz said. “It was a great experience and all for a great cause. I would have been better if we came out with the win but it’s all good.”
The fourth quarter was much of the same, as team Service tumbled over team Truth with a score 90-68. Both teams shook hands at the end of the game with LB Towns Jr. taking home the title as the most valuable player.
The game didn’t disappoint with the crowd being engaged every minute. Students were able to come support their fellow Bison during Springfest and come together for this annual gem on campus.
Gabe Sebhatu, a sophomore political science major , shared his experience coming to the game and his favorite moment of the night.
“I thought the game was entertaining. It was cool to see both teams were evenly matched so it made it more interesting to watch,” Sebhatu said,“My favorite moment in the game was probably during halftime when they started to play a knockout game,” he added.
Copy edited by Jasper Smith