Part 2: OU Men’s Basketball Scores in Costa Rica with Competition, Volunteering

Oglethorpe rising senior Andrew Steioff checked back in to share more about the Oglethorpe Men’s Basketball team’s travels in Costa Rica.

“Halfway through our excursion through Costa Rica has our team feeling cultured and a bit tired. The past couple days have been filled with a game against the five-time defending champs of the top professional league in Costa Rica, a community outreach activity, sightseeing at an active volcano, a relaxing night indulging in natural hot springs, and a whitewater rafting trip.

Our game against Barva was highly anticipated by my teammates and me—we wanted to see how we stacked up against top flight international competition. We would not be disappointed as the Barva team was one of the biggest and most athletic teams I have personally ever played against on the collegiate level. Undersized and considerably younger (most of Barva’s players were around 28 or 29 years old), we struggled to compete early as Barva jumped out to an early double digit lead. Our team once again showed tremendous heart and defensive effort as we clawed back to take the lead halfway through the third quarter, only to eventually fall to the Barva squad. Barva’s best player, a wing from Panama, was one of the most athletic and best physical specimens I have ever shared the hardwood with. Once again, Alec Pitts was named the MVP followed closely by Sam Purdy who was once again lights out from 3-point range. Two other players rounded out the night with double figures: freshman Tyler Courson and me.

The next morning we embarked on a community outreach activity at a local children’s center in San Jose. We came bearing gifts of candy, coloring books, clothes, and of course some stuffed “Peteys” to share with the children. Unanimously, the most rewarding part of the trip thus far was when we spent a few hours with the kids playing on the playground. Their most favorite activity was being carried on our shoulders through the playground. Not to be outdone, Coach Ponder had a record crowd as he shared with the children some of his famed magic tricks. When the time to depart came it was hard to tell who was more upset we were leaving: the children or the players. Continue reading