AIT Soldiers Battle in Sports Day Competition
Company R defended their title at the 262nd QM Bn. basketball tourney May 5.

The 262nd Quartermaster Battalion packed MacLaughlin Fitness Center Saturday with more than 800 Soldiers for their version of the NBA playoffs.

The tournament kicked off with the female Soldiers of Company U and R. Co. U pulled away early, as their defensive pressure led to easy baskets. They showed that it’s true what they say, “Defense wins games.”

The following game showcased Co. U and R male Soldiers in a back-and-forth dual complete with great shooting on both sides of the court. Co. R pulled out a slim victory to put them in the championship game. The next two games would include the male and female teams from Co. C and V. Co. V female Soldiers came out victorious against Co. C to advance to the final against Co. U. The Co. C male Soldiers would prove to be a little more than Co. V could handle.

The stage was set for a great finals round. Co. U would be taking on Co. V in the female Soldiers championship. Co. R would be facing off against Co. C for the male Soldiers championship.

Adding a little more excitement to the event, the Soldiers watched their drill sergeants and instructors compete in a “Bragging Rights” game.

The instructors came out on top showing why they deserved to be the post unit level champions. The drill sergeants fought hard but proved to be no match for their counterparts. Motivation was high throughout the game, and set a great stage for the main events.

After a decisive win in their first round match-up, the Co. U females looked to prove that they were here to win. Co. V would match the intensity level, as the game’s halftime score was 0-0. Neither team was able to score due to great team defense by both sides.

Co. U would finally get on track with great passing which led to easy shots down the stretch, once again pulling away and never looking back. With this victory they were crowned the 262nd QM Bn. champions.

The male Soldiers of Co. R and C had added pressure to perform at their best after the performance of their female colleagues.

As the roars from the crowd got louder, the gymnasium started to feel like an NBA playoff game. The action on the floor could be compared to the likes of the late 1980s Lakers versus Celtics rivalry.

Both teams played hard until the final buzzer. With the game close, Co. R would bring out their secret weapon – fan support. Their fellow Soldiers in the stands fed energy into their players and it showed in the efforts of the team.

Co. R proved to be a bit too much to handle for Co. C, as they successfully defended its title and remained champs.

Lt. Col. Keith Orage, 262nd QM Bn. commander, and Command Sgt. Maj. Pete Smith, 262nd QM Bn. command sergeant major, presented the champions with their first place trophies.