Jennifer Long rallies the group for the free- throw contest.
On Jan. 20, the Oklahoma City University community woke up to icy streets and the announcement that school was closed until noon. However, that news didn’t deter those in the Wesley Center and OCU Athletics from their spirited plans for that evening.
They were co-sponsoring a fund-raiser for Nothing But Nets during the OCU Stars’ basketball games with Oklahoma Baptist University teams.
Nothing But Nets is a joint campaign between The United Methodist Church and the NBA to supply mosquito nets to malaria-prone areas in Africa.
The metro’s professional basketball team, the Oklahoma City Thunder, donated prizes including a pennant signed by the players and tickets to an upcoming game, to support the fund-raiser. The Oklahoma United Methodist Foundation contributed to the effort by donating $150—$10 for each three-point basket scored during the games.
During halftime of the men’s game, the crowd cheered the leaders from a number of student organizations in a "celebrity" free-throw shooting contest. Participants were: Tessa Stutzman from Kappa Phi, Trey Witzel from Delta Alpha Chi, Seth Williams from Lambda Chi Alpha, Danny Pham from Kappa Sigma, Jarred Johnson from Phi Gamma Delta, Sara Catherine Johnson from Alpha Phi, and Karen Aguilar from Alpha Chi Omega.
OCU mascot Starsky wears a Nothing But Nets t-shirt while students show their school spirit with the sign of a star.
Karen and Seth tied for the win; each went 4-of-5 on free-throws.
Students from the Wesley Center—the United Methodist campus ministry at OCU—staffed a table in the atrium, where they shared information about Nothing But Nets and received donations. Each $10 donation netted a T-shirt for the giver, and all of the money went to the cause.
OCU Athletics donated $3 of each game ticket purchased by those who mentioned Nothing But Nets.
With money still coming in, the sponsoring groups were confident of exceeding their goal of $2,000.
"Even with the bad weather, we were thrilled with the fund-raising event. It was a great night and an important way to connect our students with mission beyond our walls," said Rev. Jennifer Long, OCU director of Religious Life. Lindi Jones, a sophomore, was student leader for the event