Team ILEP Wins First GlobalJam Tournament
March Madness got underway early this past Saturday at the Kent State University Student Recreation and Wellness Center as eight international teams squared off to compete in the university's first GlobalJam Basketball Tournament. In the championship game, Team ILEP out-shot and out-hustled a talented, physical Team China 18 to 11 to claim the GlobalJam title. The championship game was the culmination of an afternoon of competitive play among the eight international teams. The event was organized and hosted by the Office of Global Education.
Two of the eight teams in the tournament were comprised entirely of players from different nationalities: Team Global Citizens and the eventual tournament champion, Team ILEP. The team chose its name ILEP from an international-based program sponsored by the United States Department of State titled the International Leaders in Education Program to indicate its multi-national player composition. Although the remaining six teams -- Brazil, China, India, Iraq, Saudi Arabia and USA -- were primarily composed of members representing their home countries, most included members from other nationalities, as well, such as Team Iraq that boasted a number of players from Kent State's track and field team.
China, Global Citizens, Iraq and Saudi Arabia
Brazil, ILEP, India and USA
To enable the teams to play several games before elimination and to make the tournament more competitive, GlobalJam consisted of three rounds of play (see match-up results below). An initial conference round featured each team playing the other three teams within their respective conference in head-to-head matches. Following the conference round, a semi-final round matched the first place team in terms of wins from each conference against the second place in each conference. Finally, the two winners from the semi-final squared off in the championship round to determine the GlobalJam winner. The play was competitive throughout the tournament with several games being decided in the last few seconds of play.
“I had a lot of fun. These sport activities promoted by the OGE (Office of Global Education) are great. We always look forward to participating in them. Plus, it’s always good to represent our country." Samory Fraga, Team Captain, Team Brazil
“I absolutely loved being a part of this event because it allowed for people from different walks of life to unite and enjoy a great evening together. Felt extremely refreshing and I'm so glad I got an opportunity to be a part of it.” Ritika Srivastava, Team Captain, Team India
Global Jam Tournament Results
Conference Round, Global Conference
- China 16, Suadi Arabia 11. Playing a physical game, Team China outplayed a more finessed Team Saudi Arabia.
- Iraq 23, Global Citizens 18. Team Iraq dominated in the first half, but a determined Team Global Citizens staged a comeback in the second half to make the game competitive.
- China 16, Iraq 13. In its second of three games, Team China continued its aggressive play to outlast a talented Team Iraq.
- Suadi Arabia 14, Global Citizens 9. The game was competitive throughout until Team Saudi Arabia scored two consecutive baskets on break-aways to close the game out.
- China 12, Global Citizens 5. Team China used a solid defense to keep Team Global Citizens off the boards.
- Saudi Arabia 12, Iraq 5. Seeing its chance to make it to the semi-finals, Team Saudi Arabia held Team Iraq, which had averaged 18 points in its previous two games, to only 5 points.
Conference Round, International Conference
- USA 17, India 9. Despite a tightly played game in the first half, Team USA pulled away from Team India with an offensive flurry in the second.
- ILEP 16, Brazil 14. Trailing by 2 with seconds running down, Team India attempted a 3-pointer which failed to go in the basket giving Team ILEP an important win.
- ILEP 25, USA 11. Led by the play of A.J. Tucker, an undergraduate communication major, Team ILEP put on an offensive clinic and breezed to an easy win over Team USA.
- India 11, Brazil 7. Team Brazil played a spirited game despite an injury to a key player, but eventually fell to Team India.
- ILEP 18, India 5. Completing it sweep in the conference round, Team ILEP played a stellar game at both ends of the court to defeat Team India and ensure its spot in the semi-finals.
- USA 13, Brazil 0. With a semi-final slot up for grabs, Team USA easily outplayed a short-handed Team Brazil.
- China 19, USA 11. Despite a basket at the buzzer at the end of the first half, Team USA fell to Team China which was lead by the impressive shooting and ball-handling of Zhengyong Ren, a graduate student in computer science.
- 11 ILEP, Saudi Arabia 10. With seconds remaining and the scored tied, Team ILEP made on of two fouls shots to clinch the win over Team Saudi Arabia. The game was easily the most competitive of the day with close play throughout and several ties and lead-changes.
- ILEP 18, China 11. Slowly, methodically, Team ILEP gradually increased its lead on Team China throughout the game and responded with a crucial shot each time Team China mounted a comeback.
The games were surprisingly competitive as well as the level of play throughout the afternoon. The games were intense and played with a lot of enthusiasm. Everyone had a great time and enjoyed competing. The best thing was seeing all the handshakes and hugs after the games.
Angela Schwarzer, International Student and Scholar Advisor and organizer of the GlobalJam Tournament.