If you weren’t at Leavitt on the night of Wednesday, November 29, then you were one of the very few who wasn’t there. The gym was packed. The reason why: the Harlem Rockets, a comedic and an extremely skilled traveling basketball team, came to town. The Rockets were scheduled to play against our very own Leavitt Hornets Dream Team consisting of members of the staff, men’s league, and high school players in order to fundraise for the Hornets.

The Rockets were made up of an nine man squad: Ricky “7 Footer” Lopes, Donnie “Razzmatazz” Seale, Greg “The Finisher” Wells, Johnny “Magic” Dadzie, Kevin “Showboat” Jackson, and CJ the rookie were the players, Jason “White Shadow” Gibbons was the cameraman, Casey “KC” Scofield was the announcer, and Bentley was in charge of souvenirs. The team arrived during the day and spent some time in the school cafeteria before they split up to visit surrounding schools (Tripp Middle School, Turner Primary, and the Leeds, Greene, and Turner elementary schools). At the younger schools, the guest speakers entertained the children while teaching them life lessons of respect, education, and staying away from drugs.

The main event started at 7 p.m. in the Leavitt gym where the Rockets warmed up and showed off a few tricks while music blasted on the speakers. Over 900 tickets were sold with the result of a packed house, which provided the high school team with about three thousand dollars. During the game, the Rockets would stop the game to perform some mini skits. They would incorporate the local players, the crowd, and also the referee. When asked how it felt to play against the Rockets, T.J. Caldwell simply said, “I felt violated.” This was completely out of good sportsmanship, though.

The only referee that was officiating the game was Jack Bowen of Turner, who was said to be “the perfect guy for the job” by Tyler Millett. The Rockets were somewhat secretive about what jokes they would be playing on people, which forced everyone who was involved to use their improvisation skills. Jack Bowen said that the only thing that he knew they were going to do was to pull his pants down, and he was warned by the team when they said “either you run, or we’ll pants you.” Some other jokes were a wedgie given to Kyle Gagne, water poured on Zach Caldwell, and also trying to get other players in trouble with the ref. Doug Nash got back at the Rockets by “pantsing” C.J. Play was also paused to do the Macarena and the Cha-Cha and to sign autographs at halftime. Everyone was in good spirits on the 29th, and “it was a fun time” as stated by Cameron Angell. The Leavitt Hornets basketball season is sure to be one that cannot be missed.

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