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Differently-abled athletes battle on hardwood in packed Nyssa gym

The annual Support the Court basketball game brings together differently-abled students from Nyssa, Ontario and Vale.

NYSSA, Ore. — It was a packed house at Nyssa High School on Tuesday night as the community came together for the annual Support the Court basketball game.

The game brings together differently-abled students from Nyssa, Ontario and Vale for competition and fun on the hardwood. The students are paired with players from those high schools who helped them play the game.

"We have very little for the differently-abled students in the area and this is something that gives them recognition, but also getting loud and doing something special like this is kind of unique for this area," Support the Court Coordinator Nancy Menges said.

Last year's Support the Court game was held at Vale High School, and was rotated to Nyssa this year. More than 25 athletes were included on the 2023 event flyer.

"Many of these students would never have gotten to play a basketball game or touch a basketball, so this is something that they are able to do and they're quite good at it," Menges said. "So, it's kind of exciting in that way."

In addition to the basketball game, differently-abled students also served as referees. The Nyssa High School Choir performed the National Anthem, with half-time performances from the Nyssa and Ontario bands. 

Other performances Tuesday night included the Vale High School Cheer Team, Nyssa Elementary Cheer Team, and the Miracle Minute to support the three high schools' special education programs.

Those at the 2023 Support the Court game were asked to bring canned food for local food banks.

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