Special education students at Sparkman HS host the program’s first game

MADISON COUNTY, Ala. -- Sparkman High School's "Senator Learning Community" has officially hit the court for the first time!

These special education students have waited a long time for a chance to play ball, and for their first game, they played Buckhorn High School.

Senior Dakota Malone grew up playing basketball with his brothers and has waited for this chance to play competitively for a long time. "It should have happened earlier, you know," Dakota said. "It's our first year. It teaches us how to be a team. Not to like fight or whatever. Keep your team in line, don`t just argue, y'all do y'all's work and get it over with, let the team win."

And already, Dakota's coaches have recognized him as a leader.

"Dakota is a major part of the team," noted Coach Jessie Brooks. "He's a good student, does all that he can to help out. He goes to the rec center and works on his game and tries to get better."

Sadly, Dakota's first year on the team will also be his last. Being a senior, he realizes that in the game of life, his next move is "the real world."

"It's a dream come true to me," he said. "I believe I paved the way for some other people and it will let the other people do what they want to do. It's sad to see myself go, but you know, go see the real world."

They won their first game 30 to 29 in overtime.