Alumni Basketball Tournament Expands

The 12th Annual Alumni Basketball Tournament took place on Saturday, featuring teams from the 1980s to the present. Getting ready meant alumni had to dig through their closets to find their old basketball shoes and reversible jerseys to come back to their alma mater and play. They competed like they once did as younger men, when they were excited to play basketball all day. While some played basketball at De La Salle, others didn’t … but it didn’t matter.  They came to play basketball with their friends, just as they did five, or 10, or up to 40 years ago!

Bob Anderson, ‘78, who played in the All-Star game (the non-competitive game featuring alumni from the 1970s and '80s), added, “So very appreciative of the opportunity to get back on the La Salle court and while the basketball skills are no longer evident, Pilot Pride and the comfort of our brotherhood makes for a very worthwhile afternoon. So very rejuvenating to don the Purple and Gold once more, unite as fellow Pilots and celebrate our common roots."

The tournament had a new wrinkle this year: Because of the increased number of teams, players needed more gym time and more games to be played to get the tournament accomplished in one day. As a result, the tournament expanded to the Brother Robert Activity Center (the BRAC, as it is affectionately known).

For nearly all of the alumni, this was their first time at the BRAC. Besides setting up the basketball court, Rich Roskopp, facility manager, gladly opened the doors of the newly created TrackMan Golf Simulator for the alumni to see, too. 

Jake Jakubek, ‘05, enthusiastically said, “It’s always enjoyable to come back and see familiar and new faces. It’s great to see more recent grads interested in, and participating in, the alumni tournament. The BRAC is a great space for the kids. The addition of that golf simulator is a great add for the school.”

The class of 2018, featuring Donovan Collins, Jordan Winowiecki, Justin Fischer, Kole Gjonaj, and Luke Pfromm, took home the Joe Novak trophy as this year’s champions. They lost their first game of the tournament, then crushed everyone in the loser’s bracket, got to the finals, and then took care of business. 

Pictured above from the class of ‘18 are, from left, Donovan Collins, Jordan Winowiecki, Justin Fischer, Kole Gjonaj, and Luke Pfromm.

Pfromm reminisced and said, “It’s always great being back around the guys. We get to compete together again, which is a blast. But, the best part for me is hanging out with the guys who made De La Salle so special for each other.”

A special thanks goes out to: 

Tournament organizer: Joe Novak, ‘03

Referee assigner: Tom Suminski 

Basketball coach Gjon Djokaj and the basketball team for volunteering 


Pictured below are the tournament runners-up from the class of ‘21:

Joe Gerdes, Bryan Schneider, John Hunt, Gabe Lueck, and Leo Adewusi. 

Alumni Basketball Tournament Expands