SPARTA, NJ - The National Junior Honors Society hosted the thirteenth annual Hoops for Hope event at Sparta Middle School.  Hoops for Hope is a charity basketball game that pits the faculty against the students. Each year a different charity selected for the proceeds to benefit.

This year it was an easy choice for the National Junior Honors Society and their advisors Theresa Gleason and Bob Gilmartin. This year the game was to benefit the scholarship fund established in the name of a former student Isak Anderson.  Anderson died last year suddenly of a heart condition called HCM.

“We held teacher jean days and sold t-shirts at the middle and high school and the eighth grade students were excited to raise money for a great cause and for their former classmate,” said Gleason. The total mount raised for the Isak Anderson Fund was over $4,500.

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Isak’s organs were donated to save the lives of others.

“Everyone here tonight is part of the Sparta Middle School family, including the lucky people who received Isak’s organs. I believe they are here tonight with us,” said Elise Cisko, an eighth grade history teacher. 

“He was a normal middle school student, who loved sports, music, his friends, and dogs. He coached the students last year in his suit, bucket hat and his clipboard, this game misses him,” continued Cisko.

Going into the game the teachers held a 12 year winning streaks.  The stakes were high. It was a close score for most of the game with the teachers up 24-16 at the half and leading by a score of 44-34 with two minutes left in the game. The students gave it their best effort, but the teachers added to their streak with a final score of 46-42.