SAN ANTONIO – While the Alamodome was packed to watch the NCAA men’s Final Four, Fan Fest filled up earlier Saturday morning for the San Antonio Sports I Play! Afterschool Final Four.
It started with 48 local elementary school teams, and Saturday morning, it was narrowed down to the final four.
Who was involved?
Initially, teams from 48 local schools competed in a long-form tournament to get to Saturday’s final four. These schools are part of the San Antonio I Play! Afterschool Program.
The Final Four teams were Briscoe, Washington, Hirsch and Collins Garden Elementary Schools.
The championship was a nail-biter, back-and-forth battle, but Washington Elementary left Fan Fest as champions after they hoisted the trophy.
Why is the program important for the community?
It is a collaborative effort to get students involved in sports at a young age.
“They’re having a great time out there, but they’re really learning about citizenship, discipline and just having a ball,” said Mary Ullman-Japhet, with San Antonio Sports.
It is also an effective strategy in the battle against obesity in our community.
“If we can get them engaged in sport at an early age, realizing their bodies are strong and capable, then all the better. And it can make them healthier individuals and healthier adults,” Ullman-Japhet said.