Special Olympics Tennessee State Basketball Tournament This Weekend

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NASHVILLE, TN (March 7, 2024) – Special Olympics Tennessee’s (SOTN) State Basketball Tournament returns this weekend, March 8 and 9, at Lipscomb University. The event will feature 37 teams from across the state with 22 of those teams being traditional (all Special Olympics athletes) and 15 Unified Teams (Special Olympics athletes and Unified Partners). Cities that will be represented at the State Basketball Tournament include Nashville, Chattanooga, Knoxville, Murfreesboro, Franklin, Columbia, Sparta, Cookeville, Hendersonville, Lebanon, Kingston Springs, the Tri-Cities and more.

These teams consist of traditional teams composed of all Special Olympics Tennessee athletes and well as Unified Teams, which are made up of athletes and Unified Partners. Teams will participate in screening games to properly division them based on skill and then competitions will take place Friday evening and all-day Saturday. A full schedule more information can be found at SpecialOlympicsTN.org/Basketball.

“Basketball is one of my favorite sports so having State Basketball as my official kick-off for March Madness is something that I look forward to each year,” said Nathaniel Hantle, Vice President of Sports for Special Olympics Tennessee. “I know that the competition will be great and by the end of the weekend we’ll have our own rendition of One Shining Moment to look back on.”

Through the day, SOTN athletes will take part in FUNFitness, a physical therapy screening, which is part of the Healthy Athletes program. FUNFitness provides athletes the opportunity to be screened for flexibility, functional core strength and balance. These screenings will help athletes improve optimal function in sports training and competition as well as prevention, or reduced risk, of injury.

Opening Ceremonies for the State Basketball Tournament will begin at 2:45 p.m. at Collins Auditorium at Lipscomb University. Screening games to division teams will take place from 3:30 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. Competition will run on four courts between Lipscomb University and Lipscomb Academy from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. on Friday and 8:30 a.m. to 3:15 p.m. on Saturday.

Admission is free and supporters are encouraged to attend the event to cheer on athletes as they compete.

Select games will be streamed on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/SpecialOlympicsTN.

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