There has been no shortage of inspirational and heartwarming moments in high school basketball season. One month after DeSoto (Mo.) team manager Brooke Kirby, who has autism, stole the show in her first JV game, an incredible display of sportsmanship in Texas gave Coronado (El Paso) team manager Mitchell Marcus a moment he will never forget.
What happened last weekend in Groton, Mass., however, might just be a first — an inspirational dunk.
As Terrence Payne of NBC Sports' College Basketball Talk reports, Lawrence Academy coach Kevin Wiercinski wanted to do something on Senior Day to honor team manager Joey Mullaney, who has a rare neurological disorder called Friedrich's ataxia. Wiercinski asked Mullaney if he would like to suit up for the final game of the season. Mullaney said yes, but only under the condition that he could dunk.
“[Coach Wiercinski] laughed it off,” Mullaney told Payne. “I was like, ‘I’m not lying. I’m dunking it.’ I’ve seen these kind of shots before where kids do layups or threes. I just really wanted to go out with a bang.”
So after Wiercinski ran the idea by the opposing coach at Buckingham Browne & Nichols, and asked the referees if they would be willing to ignore the rules for the start of the game, Lawrence Academy began practicing Mullaney's dunk.
As you can see in the video above, it was a success.
“I did a little pull up like Dwyane Wade would do,” Mullaney told Payne. “I had to add emphasis to the dunk.”
That's how you go out with a bang.