Wheelchair basketball event brings tears of joy and big smiles

by | Oct 21, 2019 | Campus News, Feature, Lakeshore, Sports

Kyle Drinnan, Sports Reporter

After hours of trying, Fatimah Almadameghe’s determination helped her reach her goal.

And her ambition was to score a bucket on a basketball net.

The Humber Lakeshore Recreational team hosted its wheelchair basketball event on Oct.16 and while people played the game with custom-wheelchairs with angled wheels, Almadameghe stayed along the side of the gym throwing the ball up at the hoop by herself.

The Advertising and Graphic Design student, who uses a wheelchair due to complications at birth, was alone while other students were playing pickup hoops, repeatedly shooting the ball, hoping one of her shots will go in the hoop.

“I came here last year and spent an hour and a half trying to get a basket. I didn’t get it but I am ready this year,” Almadameghe said.

Fatimah Almadameghe hugs the ball after making her first ever basket at Lakeshore’s wheelchair basketball event. (Kyle Drinnan)

A good amount of time had gone by with Almadameghe shooting the ball from the same spot, trying to achieve her goal.

Her determination to make a basket drove her as minutes became 10 minutes of shooting, then 20, then 30.

And then it happened. The sound of a basketball hitting the rim of the hoop reverberated in the gym, followed by the familiar swoop of the ball slipping through the threads of a net.

Cheers came from those surrounding her but she was quiet as words had left her when she heard the swoop.

Tears flowed down her face despite her hands on her eyes trying to clean up the evidence of her emotions.

Her giant smile stood out rather than her lack of words.

When she got the basketball back, she hugged it as if it was her own NBA Championship Trophy.

After that shot, she tried again. And in the next 15 minutes she made three more shots.

“I did it,” Almadameghe said. She kept repeating that phrase as
emotions were breaking the tone of Men’s soccer’s chances to repeat in doubt due to game results her voice.

“I have been going to the gym more,” Almadameghe said. “It’s great having a community that I am able to access and easy to accommodate. Its events like these that make it more fun.”

As the event finished, she rolled out of the gym still with a smile on her face.

It obvious she was going to work on something new to achieve, because nothing was stopping her.