Women from Tucson, Phoenix and Fort Bliss, El Paso, Texas, gathered at Benko Fitness Center here for the Martin Luther King Jr. Women’s Basketball Tournament Jan. 18-19.
The D-M Mustangs women’s basketball team asked Master Sgt. Luis Colon Jr., 355th Maintenance Group programs office safety representative, to coordinate the event after he successfully set up the men’s “Best of the West” Basketball Tournament on Nov. 29, 2013.
“People who haven’t seen any of these games don’t know that women’s basketball is taken just as seriously as men’s basketball,” said Colon. “The level of competition was enough to make the games enjoyable to watch but not so competitive that there was any negativity involved.”
The tournament consisted of five teams, Las Tucson Sol, Orange Crush and the D-M Mustangs from Tucson, the Phoenix Venom and Fort Bliss from El Paso, Texas.
Among the many women on the court there was a special guest present for the tournament.
Davellyn Whyte, guard for the San Antonio Stars, a team a part of the Women’s National Basketball Association, also competed in the tournament as a member of Las Tucson Sol.
Before her WNBA career Whyte played for the University of Arizona Wildcats women’s basketball team where she became the 2nd leading scorer in the school’s history with over 2,000 points.
“The fact that we had a WNBA player on the court was really exciting,” Colon said. “It showed the other girls what type of player you have to be to compete at the same level in the WNBA. It’s something I’ll always remember.”
The D-M Mustangs and Las Tucson Sol advanced to the championship game where Las Tucson Sol claimed the victory 66-63