Basketball Midnight Madness: A slow start, but a great turnout

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The event hadn’t yet begun, so the Highlander’s own new Hype Team practiced their steps on stage while the athletics crew gathered their athletes on the side, arranging them in order of class year. Music began to flow out of the Atrium and into the ears of passing Highlanders whose destination was instantly changed. The Women’s Basketball team rehearsed their walks up the stage, bubbling with anticipation and excitement. With just as much enthusiasm and camaraderie, the Men’s Basketball team followed.

As the Atrium grew more crowded, groups of people were having a good time-off from studying, dancing with their Highlander glowing baton sticks and pom-poms.

When it was the Hype Team’s time to shine, they didn’t hesitate to take command of the stage. From break dancing to cartwheels, the team had all the right moves and the crowd loved their energy and school spirit.

Best compared to WWE superstars, the NJIT Women’s and Men’s Basketball teams made their way up to center stage, unafraid to demonstrate their vibrant personalities. The entrance songs varied from Trapt’s “Headstrong” to the Spice Girl’s “Wannabe,” but all seemed to fit the occasion. A short video and description were provided just as they were introduced. It was nice to see that athletes from Ukraine to Virginia were cheered on just as much as local players.

When the moment of truth came, the diverse crowd of proud parents, thrilled younger siblings and stress-free NJIT students anxiously waited to hear the MC call out the number in their hands. A handful of lucky students went home with an iPad Mini, iPod, 32” TV, Dre Beats Pill, or a trip to the Men’s basketball game in Rhode Island.

With the night coming to a close, the DJ turned up the volume and everyone was soon dancing again, joining the Hype Team on stage and in circles made up of old and new friends.

Carlos Santibanez

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