I’m sure this story would have gotten more attention if the headline was “Staff beats students.” It may not be appropriate, but that’s what happened in the annual staff vs. students basketball game.
With perhaps the most athletic staff the school has seen, they needed that athleticism to hold on to their 45-40 win. With a halftime score of 35-15, when the two teams took the court after the break the score was 35-24 due to some “bonus freethrows” by the student team.
The gym was packed on both sides with standing-room only as the teams put on a show for the fans. Perhaps the biggest thing on the players’ minds was the promise made by girls basketball coach Ardine Primus.
Nearly 50 years ago Joe Namath went out on a limb and made his famous guarantee that his Jets would win the Super Bowl. They did indeed win the Super Bowl in a big upset.
Primus told her team that if she didn’t score at least 10 points in the game, she would run laps with the girls team. Primus missed several short shorts and put-backs early in the game, but went on a roll and got six points before the half and looked as if she would make good on her promise.
Once she hit her eighth point, though, her shooting went cold. And when the women staffers left the game after their last rotation, she would have no more opportunities to reach her goal. She played on the male team in the final rotation, but they wouldn’t pass her the ball even when she was open.
DeSoto County Athletic Director Eric “Shady” Shea was the referee and, even if she had scored, he was prepared to call a foul or charge or even make up a call just so Primus would fall short. The game ended with Primus still on eight points.
But at least the staff had another win.