Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Varsity boys travel to Unionville, cheer on Ally Hoppe in game

The Hawkeye varsity boys team surrounds Ally Hoppe and Mr. and Mrs. Hoppe in the Patriot gym last night. (photo credit - Connor Davis)

Last night, the Hawkeye boys varsity basketball team had the night off.

If it were a normal Friday night, they may have driven to Middleville to watch the Hawkeye girls play Thornapple-Kellogg.  However, this was not a normal Friday night.

In a week filled with emotion over the loss of their teacher and mentor Mr. Josh Hoppe, the team decided to do something special for his family. Mr. Hoppe was famous for jokingly saying to his male students, ‘stay away from my sister’, but the team decided to do just the opposite.

The Hawkeye team drove to Unionville-Sebawaing High School, in the thumb area of the state, to watch Ally Hoppe, a senior for the USA Patriots, play in her game against Sandusky.

On Wednesday, the boys had a late practice, and toward the end, they went with Mr. Haverdink to meet Ally and her parents. Ally didn’t know if she should play in the game Friday night, and the boys told her that she should and that Mr. Hoppe would want her to.

“During third hour on Friday we decided to go so we talked to coaches, parents, and the rest of the players,” senior varsity player Connor Davis said. “We then decided the drive was worth it to support who we called our sister!”

“The experience was even more than what we expected – very emotional for her (Ally) and her family,” Davis continued. “But after the game we talked to them and she (Mr. Hoppe’s mom) said that we were now her kids and she loved us all. Also, she said that she thought she would never be able to smile again, but we changed that for her. She said she could see Mr. Hoppe in all of us. It was a very powerful moment for all of us,” Davis said.

A related story in Mr. Hoppe’s local paper, The Tuscola Today, went into detail about this visit as well.

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