Blind basketball player makes shot in front of 2,500 fans
ZEELAND, Mich. - Jules Hoogland, a junior at Zeeland East High School, is a member of the school's basketball team. She also happens to be completely blind. So when she played in the last game of the season, 2,500 people in the packed gymnasium went completely silent, so she could listen for the tapping on the rim to know where to aim her free throw shot.
In the now-viral video, a woman is seen banging a stick on the back of the basketball hoop. Hoogland jumps and shoots the ball, and it sinks into the net. The crowd goes wild.
Hoogland plays on Zeeland's Unified Sports basketball team which is made up of students with and without disabilities.
The unified sports initiative helps special education students take part in sporting opportunities.
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"The positive and enthusiastic environment our student body created on Tuesday is something our athletes won’t forget!" Zeeland Public Schools teacher leader Nate Vande Guchte said.
The 17-year-old student has close to a 4.0 GPA and says that she is working on learning how to live independently.
Her mom says that she hopes her daughter's strength will inspire others.
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This story was reported from Los Angeles.