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HomeSportsSpringstead Hosts Basketball Tournament for Local Charity Organization

Springstead Hosts Basketball Tournament for Local Charity Organization

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Article and Photography by Alice Mary Herden

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On Friday, January 7th, Lecanto’s Junior Varsity and Varsity Girls Basketball teams, including the boys, challenged Springstead in a four-game one night court battle. They did this to help a local charity organization, People Helping People in Hernando County.

The event stemmed from the idea of Greg O’Connell, Springstead’s retired basketball coach and continuous supporter of the Eagle’s basketball program. O’Connell approached Athletic Director Dustin Kupcik with a generous idea that, if he picked up the tab on ticket admissions, in exchange, spectators could donate non-perishable food items or cash donations for admission towards a local charity. “We organized the event three years ago, and it was a great success. It’s something small we can do to help out our community, but it also helps these kids to understand that they are part of a community,” said Kupcik.

The Hoops for Hunger was again a success and it showed how a community could pull together through organizing a sporting event with a cause behind it. And, of course, watching five-plus hours of good competitive basketball games.

Game Results
Girls JV Lecanto 54 Springstead 16
Boys JV Lecanto 61 Springstead 51
Girls V Lecanto 50 Springstead 46
Boys V Lecanto 48 Springstead 51

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The boys will see Lecanto again, this time on January 25th, at the Panthers’ home court; JV tips off at 6 pm. The girls will take on Palm Harbor University at home on January 25th; JV tips off at 6 pm.

People Helping People in Hernando County, Inc. (PHP) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit interfaith organization established to provide basic necessities to impoverished people in our local community. Besides providing food, PHP will link people to benefits, education, training, and resources empowering them to help themselves to become productive members of Hernando County. https://www.phphernando.org/

Alice Mary Herden
Alice Mary Herden is an award-winning professional photographer and writer focusing on nature and wildlife. From 2008 to 2021, Alice has owned Green-Fly Media LLC, a freelance photography business. She freelanced for Hernando Sun for five years covering sports, community, and environmental reporting. Alice was nominated for Agricultural & Environmental Reporting for articles published in Hernando Sun in the Florida Press Association Weekly Newspaper Contest. She placed second for Agricultural & Environmental Reporting and was awarded first place in Portfolio Photography in 2018 and took home first place in 2019. She was awarded the Robert J. Ellison Memorial Award for Portfolio Photography in 2018. She published three online magazines, Voices to Visions, a Dust and Shadows Magazine, which featured haunted locations and interviews with paranormal celebrities. Football Magazine was the first minor league football magazine in the state of Florida based on the United Football Federation football league that featured game coverage, interviews including former NFL players and College Coaches. She also created RAW- Real Amazing Wildlife featured nature and wildlife photography. Since 2015, Alice has been a volunteer at Chinsegut Conservation Center located in Brooksville, Florida. She helps with programs as well as organizing nature photography workshops. Alice is also a co-organizer for the yearly event ‘Chinsegut Wildlife Day’ and the ‘Wild Florida’ Photography Exhibit. Alice obtained two career diplomas, Wildlife/Forestry Conservation and Freelance Writing, from Penn Foster in 2019. She completed the Florida Master Naturalist Program core module courses: Upland, Freshwater, and Coastal Systems through the adult education UF/IFAS Extension program to obtain her Master Naturalist certification in September of 2020. She completed the Land Steward and Restoration Courses to obtain her title as an Advanced Master Naturalist. In September of 2020, Alice enrolled in a course at Cornell Lab Bird Academy to obtain her certification in Ornithology: Comprehensive Bird Biology, which she completed in October 2020. In January of 2021, Alice was hired for a part-time position with FWC as an Educational Specialist and in June of 2021 hired as Sponsored Project OPS for UF/IFAS in Hernando County. She is back writing for Hernando Sun and continues to publish photography and nature writing on her blog- FloridaNature.Net. Alice is married to Donald Herden Jr and resides in Weeki Wachee, Florida, with their two dogs, Bree and Willow.
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