Special Olympics basketball going for the gold


Marlena Roberto

Michelle Owrey celebrating after an exciting game.

Isabel Hughes, Staff Reporter

Riverside Brookfield High School’s Special Olympics 2015-2016 basketball season began in October and ended at the beginning of January. The track and field season will begin in March and go until June.

Special Olympics is a national organization for students with intellectual and physical disabilities to get involved in ways that they might not be able to in standard programs. These students can play the sports that everyone else does through Special Olympics.

The students in Special Olympics learn the value of teamwork, responsibility, sportsmanship, and the importance of living an active, healthy life. The athletes train together and make a family-like bond. As for the coaches, they could not feel more lucky to work with these athletes.

“Best part of my day,” said co-head coach, Jill Musil. “I feel blessed just to be around them to get to meet them and work with them because they’re just wonderful human beings. How can you beat it?”

This year the team hopes to improve their skills on basketball and track techniques. As a byproduct of improving skills, the team hopes to send several athletes to State as they have in the past. Along with improved passing, rebounding, and shooting, the team has learned to handle losses much better.

The team has two competitive events a week during the season. Basketball has games and practices during the week. Track practices twice during the week and has meets on the weekend.

“It is so much fun coaching Special Olympics, and the relationships we have developed with the student-athletes is the best thing about coaching,” said head coach, John Fields.

Fields and Musil want RB to know that Special Olympics is equal to all the sports at RB.

“We stress competitiveness and we always play to win and compete at our highest level. We also stress having fun and showing sportsmanship to their own teammates and their opponents. Special Olympics is one big family!” said Fields.

The athletes always enjoy having a large crowd at their events and encourage everyone to come out to see them. If any student is interested in volunteering during the season to help out with the team, they can contact Coach Fields or Coach Musil.

Before any event, the coaches remind the team that they are there to have fun and to do their best, keep an eye out for teammates and work together. After all, teamwork makes the dreamwork.