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Wed, July 08

Grand Canyon Phantoms kick off winter break with all-day game series

Fans gather at the Grand Canyon High School gym to cheer on the men’s and women’s varsity and junior varsity teams against Rock Point Dec. 20. (Abigail Kessler/WGCN)

Fans gather at the Grand Canyon High School gym to cheer on the men’s and women’s varsity and junior varsity teams against Rock Point Dec. 20. (Abigail Kessler/WGCN)

GRAND CANYON, Ariz. — The Grand Canyon Phantoms marked the opening of basketball season with a full day of games Dec. 20.

Men and women’s junior and varsity teams played against the Rock Point Cougars in a series of matches throughout the day. Though the scores might not have been the most encouraging, plenty of locals were excited to see their team back for another season.

“This is a really fun event,” said Cherie Benefield, who was tending the PTA sales table. “It’s a great way for all of us to support the school.”

The pulled-out bleachers in the high school’s gym were filled with families and Grand Canyon residents ready to cheer on their team. Announcements had been put up throughout the park and people responded. A booth sold Navajo tacos to raise money for the basketball teams and the PTA offered chocolates as a fundraiser for the school in general. Many of the people in the school community either bought treats or helped with the booths. Most did so out of a strong desire to invest in students through extracurricular activities such as sports.

The investment wasn’t only from the community. The athletes had practiced hard in anticipation of this day. It seemed clear from their performance that all of the teams were putting in a lot of effort and doing relatively well for it. The players on the court focused on doing their best and were well-coordinated. While benched, they cheered on their teammates. Everyone appeared eager to show their best work. Despite this, the Phantoms did end up losing every game.

Regardless, the players on the teams left the event enthusiastic about the rest of the season. There are a lot of plans to prepare them for upcoming games, and most all enjoy the game even aside from the competition.

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