Joah Tucker couldn’t have asked for a better night in honor of his late cousin, Jared Bruce. The former Milwaukee Panthers standout was joined by fellow alumni of the basketball program as well as former college all-stars from the city of Milwaukee in a basketball game to raise money for the school named after his cousin.
Players such as Clay Tucker, Ed McCants and James Eayrs lit up the scoreboard for a rocking 82-80 victory for the UWM alumni. The real winners were the fans, who paid $7 apiece to see a wonderful display of athletic prowess from some of the best players the university and city has produced in the last decade.
The Milwaukee white team had the ball with just four seconds left, down two points when Deonte Tatum stepped on the line, turning the ball over to the gold team. White team pressed on the inbound, and Clay Tucker fumbled the pass out of bounds with just two seconds remaining on the clock. A shot by Larry House rimmed out at the buzzer, and the Gold team of UWM alumni celebrated by storming the court.
Following the game, both teams formed a prayer circle as a reminder to honor those who have fallen. At the opening tip, PA announcer and Milwaukee Athletics marketing director LeVar Ridgeway marked a moment of silence for Jared Bruce as well as Lavelle Felton, who died just two weeks after last year’s Inaugural Banner Boys Charity Game when he was killed by a gunshot at a gas station in a senseless murder. Felton played in last year’s event.
Among those who were in attendance but not participating were James Wright, Rob Sanders, Rob Jeter, sponsor David Gruber and several members of the current Panther basketball team. The event raised an estimate of over $1,000 that will go to the Jared C. Bruce Academy and Scholarship Fund.
Because of the success of the event, Tucker plans to bring a third installment to Milwaukee next year.
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