There may not be a more anticipated regular season match-up between non-conference foes than the Feb. 14 showdown between Bellevue and Maple Valley girls varsity basketball teams. Oddly enough, it has little to do with the match-up on the court.
This game has everything to do with where it’s taking place — Little Caesars Arena in downtown Detroit.
Taking part in the Detroit Pistons’ Court of Dreams program, Bellevue and Maple Valley will tip off in the brand-new, state-of-the-art facility at 1:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 14.
“It’s an experience of a lifetime,” said Maple Valley athletic director Landon Wilkes. “I think it means a lot to any kid to have that experience.”
Wilkes said he was contacted by Bellevue coach Kayla Whitmyer about the possibility of taking part in the game, and knew it was a chance he couldn’t pass up. Likewise, Whitmyer is excited about facing a team so close to home in such an exciting venue.
“It is great playing our neighbors, Maple Valley,” Whitmyer said. “It really brings a sense of community with us to Detroit. I think given the grandeur of the event, it would be overwhelming to see the outpouring of support. Although, we feel the unwavering support from our Bronco Family no matter the location or attendance.”
That sense of community stretches to the court as well, as all ticketholders for the high school game will have a chance to step on the court to shoot one free throw, Wilkes said. Tickets to the high school game are also good for the Pistons game that evening.
“This is an incredible opportunity for our student-athletes, school and community,” Whitmyer said. “One I’d imagine we would cherish for years to come. We are thrilled to play in a billion-dollar state of the art facility with our Bronco family.”
Tickets can be purchased by contacting the Bellevue High School athletic office at (269) 763-9435, or the Maple Valley High School athletic department at (517) 852-9275.