2023 MLK Basketball Classic Story
The Martin Luther King holiday was celebrated with a full day of basketball at McKale Center on the University of Arizona Campus on Monday, January 16, 2023. Thousands of basketball fans watched 8 high school basketball games and an elementary school exhibition game.
High-lighting the action on the court was The Gregory School’s senior Vince Edwards who scored 17 points to lead the Hawks to a 62-to-35 victory over the St. Augustine Wolves.
Christian Carter netted 23 points and Bradley Curtis added 20 as the Thatcher Eagles defeated the Sabino Sabercats 80-to-70. Westin Haebig was the leading scorer of the game with 37 points for the Sabercats.
In the final game of the MLK Classic, which tipped off just after 8:00 PM, Jameson Salkowskie scored 15 as the Catalina Foothills Falcons outpaced the Cholla Chargers 54-to-37.
In girls’ action, Sienna Paz scored 11 points to lead the Sahuarita Mustangs to a 55-to-30-point win over the Amphi Panthers.
Sophomore Sidney Anderson lead the Ironwood Ridge Nighthawks to a 63-to-34 win over the Mountain View Mountain Lions with 21 points.
Nayeli Nidez-Acuña scored 14 points and Gabi Delgado added 13 as the Sunnyside Blue Devils beat the Rincon / University High School Rangers 42-to-34.
The day of basketball began at 8:00 am with a girls’ 5th grade and under exhibition game with Jazelle Penn scoring 6 points to lead the Manzo Bobcats over the Booth Fickett Falcons 12-to-10.
The MLK Basketball Classic is an annual community event commemorating Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. by celebrating cultural awareness, good sportsmanship, and citizenship. Scholarships were awarded through an essay contest and those in attendance enjoyed halftime cheer and dance team presentations, performances of the national anthem, and recognition of school staff members as part of the celebration.
The MLK Basketball Classic is sponsored by Tucson Unified School District and is presented by Coaches for Charity.
The 2023 MLK Honorees introduced at the halftime of each game were:
Amphi — Tom Frank
Sahuarita — Pete Morales
St. Augustine Catholic — Dr. Barbara Monsegur
The Gregory — Michael Lopez
Mountain View — Robert Kennerly & Adam Vargas
Ironwood Ridge — Bill Lang
Thatcher — Don Conrad
Sabino — Donna Muzzy
Rincon UHS — Roxanne Taylor
Sunnyside — Veronica Vergara
Marana — Mary Francis Mitchell
Tucson High — Robert DeBerry
Salpointe Catholic — Kay Sullivan
Sahuaro — Dr. Charles Collingwood
Catalina Foothills — Gary Reed
Cholla — George Parra
2023 Executive Committee
Cassidy Hare – MLK Co-Chair
Brian Wilson – MLK Co-Chair
Dr. Ed Ackerley – Chairman
Janet Hare – Vice Chair
Joe Paddock – Arizona Interscholastic Association
Desire Wheeler – TUSD
Steve Botkin – Sahuaro High School
TUSD Governing Board:
Dr. Ravi Shah – President
Val Romero – Clerk
Natalie Luna Rose
Dr. Gabriel Trujillo
Holly Leman Hammel
Frank J Armenta
9:00 Ken White, Neil Katz, Jacob Greenberg
10:30 Anthony Miles, Rafael Gallego, Charles Blue
12:00 Cleo Robinson, Carlos Jimenez, Guillermo Flores
1:30 Luther “Rick” Prewitt, Guy Giordano. Patrick O’Neill
3:00 Reshea Bristol, Jeffrey Mundell, ReCharde Johnson
4:30 Don Riley, Kurt Stueck, Matthew Hudson
6:00 Joseph Miller, Joe Morris Jr., Tyrone Cephers
7:30 Mirum Washington-White, William Colegrove, Mark Ijames
Liaisons to the Officials:
J. Berry Roberts,
Commissioner of Officials:
Liaison to the Teams:
Brian Wilson, Raymond Smith
Table Crew Chief:
Alejandro Delgado López
Alejandro Delgado López
J. Berry Roberts