Nearly 150 former Crimson athletes will hit the court this weekend during the 2nd annual Jacksonville High School Alumni Night.
Jacksonville High School Alumni Association Executive Director Amy Albers says last year’s boys basketball alumni game brought in more than $3,000 to support District 117.
Chuck Cropp, a 2002 JHS graduate, says the inaugural game was a blast and he hopes to improve his stat line from last year.
“It was fun playing ball with some of those guys I played with for years and also playing with the guys I have never played against. It was a cool experience to see the Jacksonville community come together. Just being a Jacksonville alum is an honor. So many people want to come out and support JHS,” says Cropp.
The boys will be split into two games. Graduates from 2000-2015 will tip off at 7:30 and graduates from 1999 play at 8:30. Bob Chipman, a 1970 JHS graduate, will look to defend his Most Valuable Player Award from 2015.
Due an overwhelming push from the public, girls’ basketball and volleyball alumni games have been added this year.
Belinda Whitaker, who will participate in both events, graduated from JHS in 1991 and was a three-sport athlete. Whitaker says she is looking forward to seeing old teammates and meeting recent graduates.
“I’m really excited about it and I am glad they decided to incorporate more games this year. I’m nervous because there are a lot of younger players than me,” says Whitaker.
Cheryl Kelly hasn’t stopped playing and coaching volleyball since she graduated in 1988.
“I love the game for one, but I was a senior on the 1988 State Champion team and I have never played on The Bowl floor. That was a big draw for me to be able to actually play a game on the floor,” Kelly says.
The volleyball game starts at 4:30 and the girls basketball game will follow at 6 p.m.
Doors open at the JHS Bowl on Saturday at 4 p.m. and tickets are $5.