Middle school ‘March of Champions’ returns this weekend

MILWAUKEE – A The 2013 March of Champions (MOC) Middle School Basketball Championships will be held March 22-24 at various locations throughout Milwaukee. This annual event, now in its eighth year, is the result of a partnership between Milwaukee Public Schools, Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Milwaukee and the Mother Kathryn Daniels Conference Center. The tournament will host a mixture of public, private and charter schools. Teams include 6th-, 7th- and 8th-grade boys and girls.

The tournament’s games, times, locations, and updated bracket information are available at QuickScores.com/Milwaukee.  Admission for each game is $2 for adults and $1 for students under 18.

The MOC is modeled after state high school championships and ‘bracketed’ similarly to the NCAA tournament. It includes a series of elimination rounds conducted over a single weekend at four area Boys & Girls Clubs in Milwaukee. The final round will be held at the Jeffrey Alan Carter (JAC) Sports Complex inside the Mother Kathryn Daniels Conference Center (MKDCC), 3500 West Mother Daniels Way, near N. 35th Street and W. Hampton Avenue. That event will bring together the best middle school basketball teams from the greater Milwaukee area and pack fans, families and patrons into the JAC to witness an exciting and remarkable one-of-a-kind event.

Larry Sanders, current Milwaukee Bucks player, and Montrell Hobbs, March of Champions alum and current Rufus King International School senior, will be honored at March of Champions on Sunday, March 24 at the MKDCC. Sanders and Hobbs will be recognized during the halftime of the Boys’ Championship game, scheduled to begin at 6:30 p.m.

“This is a wonderfully creative way to engage the exact population we’re seeking to target,” said LaNelle Ramey, Executive Director of the Daniels-Mardak Boys & Girls Club. “By building a family atmosphere and environment where we can interact positively with youth and families, we provide ourselves a platform to creating lasting and impactful relationships with community stakeholders and effectively accomplish our mission of empowerment and development.”

“In eight years, the MOC has already set a standard which other tournaments are seeking to meet,” said William Molbeck, MPS Sports and Athletics Commissioner. “The Milwaukee Recreation Middle School league has embraced this event as the premier opportunity for their athletes to compete. It’s just like the NCAA tournament when the tip-off occurs at the MKDCC!”

Boys’ and Girls’ brackets will conclude on Championship Sunday, March 24. The Girls’ Championship game is scheduled for 5:00 p.m. and the Boys’ Championship game is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. For more information about this event, please contact Andrew Rossa at (414) 475-8906.

Milwaukee Public Schools is Wisconsin’s largest school district, serving more than 78,000 students in more than 160 schools across the city. U.S. News and World Report named MPS’ Rufus King International School and Ronald Wilson Reagan College Preparatory High School the two best high schools in the state and among the 200 best in the country in 2012. In the past year, Milwaukee Public Schools posted a growing graduation rate 17 points higher than the rate for 2000.