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Inclusive basketball game makes lasting memories for Western Michigan Christian students

Posted at 7:41 PM, Feb 20, 2020
and last updated 2020-02-20 22:32:46-05

NORTON SHORES, Mich. — Wednesday, Western Michigan Christian hosted a basketball game outside of their normal schedule for a very good reason.

The game started just after school. The band was there and the stands were packed. The players got their moment in the spotlight.

But the players aren't the normal Friday night line up. The two teams are comprised of Western Michigan Christian's varsity basketball players, as well as Orchard View Community School's Special Olympics players.

“A couple of them told me, they were up so early today because they were so excited about this,” Special Olympics Coach Kate Bultma said.

The school rolls out the full experience. It means a lot for Sawyer Arkema, who's a senior at WMC. He loves basketball and practices with the team every Wednesday.

“It’s just so great. Just the community of people here…that have just surrounded him and value him,” Sawyer's dad Paul Arkema said.

Sawyer got the chance to score the last basket of the game. His reaction, and the reaction the other Special Olympics players had in their moment on the court is worth it's weight in gold.