Friends Connect is a group focussed on creating opportunities for the life skills students to interact with other Maine West students. Friends Connect members organize, participate in, and assist with activities such as pizza parties, holiday parties, basketball tournaments, Special Olympics events, the NHS softball game, and Life Skills prom.
This past weekend New Trier hosted a basketball tournament for the life skills students. Maine West sent two teams to the tournament this year, and Friends Connect members traveled to Wilmette to cheer on Maine West teams. Urvil, Matt, Laron, Christian, Ryan W., Hayden, and Marisela played on Team #1, and Mary, Ryan S., John, Angelina, Emily, Santiago, and Taylor competed on Team #2. Both teams played three games throughout the day.
There were some great moments during the games. Urvil made multiple three-pointers and Taylor rebounded almost every missed shot attempt. Both teams had a ton of fans that cheered loudly all day. “Seeing the parents and volunteers come out to support these kids was truly amazing. So many people working together, and the reactions from the kids made it all worthwhile,” senior Clara Cupuro said.
The players practice throughout the year to prepare for the tournament. “The kids have been working really hard and it was so nice to see how excited they got during the game while having their family and friends cheering them on,” senior Amanda Garcia said. They will continue to keep working hard and practicing for the tournament Maine West hosts later in the school year.