West Windsor, N.J. – The men’s basketball team headed for Washington, D.C., on December 14, for an overnight stay and an opportunity to play in what has become an annual game at the famed Verizon Center. The Vikings came away with a 71-66 win against CCBC – Catonsville.
While the win was certainly satisfying, the sightseeing stops to the Lincoln Memorial and the National Holocaust Museum were fulfilling in another way. In preparation for the trip, players attended a background session at the Mercer County Holocaust/Genocide Resource Center led by faculty member Elizabeth DeGiorgio, who is co-director of the center.
“I have never been to D.C. before. It was really interesting,” said sophomore forward Barry Brockington. Brockington was impressed by the Lincoln Memorial, the site of the famous Martin Luther King “I Have a Dream” speech. He also got a new perspective during his visit to the Holocaust Museum. “I didn’t know much about the Holocaust. We saw a lot of artifacts from that time.” He notes that the discussion with Professor DeGiorgio prior the trip really helped him get more out of the experience.
Still, for a basketball player, the clear highlight of the trip came with the game at the Verizon Center. “I will remember it for the rest of my life,” Brockington said, noting that Kobi Bryant and the LA Lakers had played against the Washington Wizards on the same floor the night before.
Head Coach Howard Levy, now in his fourth season with the Vikings, has made the excursion a special tradition for his teams and the players couldn’t be happier about it.
Some of the players’ parents and Coach Levy’s D.C. friends came out to cheer on the team.
The Vikings also got a tour of the locker room and the Wizards’ practice court, and met the current Georgetown Coach, John Thompson III, as well as his father, John Thompson, Jr., Georgetown’s legendary former coach. Plus, said Brockington, “We won, 71-66. It was a really good game.” The forward contributed 12 points. As of winter break, the Vikings’ record is a solid 9-3.
Before boarding the bus back to New Jersey, the team stayed to watch the first half of the Georgetown game against Western Carolina. The Hoyas are ranked no. 15 in the country and have a 9-1 record. “We saw some good basketball,” Brockington said.
Brockington notes that it’s a great experience to travel with his teammates. “The team gets closer; it improves the chemistry. We are like brothers,” he said.
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