ROCHESTER, Mich. -- Having already tasted glory in local, district, and state competitions, Alyssa Conrad captured another first-place finish on Saturday, when she wowed the crowds at the Elks Hoop Shoot Great Lakes Regional Championship.
Representing Brazil Elks Lodge 762, Alyssa, 10, daughter of Mark and Lori Conrad and a student at Jackson Township School, sank 21 out of 25 free throws plus 5 for 5 in a tie breaker in the 8-9-year-old Girls division, making her a true standout in the field of more than 3 million boys and girls, ages 8-13, who have participated in the contest since last fall.
Now, Alyssa will travel with her parents, courtesy of the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, to Springfield, Mass. -- the birthplace of basketball -- to be among the 72 top youngsters vying for the chance to claim one of six national trophies awarded at the Elks Hoop Shoot National Free Throw Contest, April 22-25.
A great showing in the national championship will not only earn Alyssa a place in Elks Hoop Shoot history, but also land her name on a plaque in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.
The Elks Hoop Shoot Free Throw Contest has seen more than 94 million participants since its inception, making it the largest coeducational youth sports program in the nation.
Funded entirely by the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, the Elks Hoop Shoot Free Throw Contest has served as a testing ground for sports legends Cleveland Cavaliers' Trajan Langdon, WNBA 2001 Rookie of the Year Jackie Stiles of the former Portland Fire, Iowa Hawkeyes head coach Steve Alford, Olympic gold medallist and former Golden State Warriors Chris Mullin, former North Carolina State star Jennifer Howard, and former Chicago White Sox third-baseman Chris Snopek.
The Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks is a patriotic and philanthropic fraternal organization with nearly 1.2 million members in more than 2,000 communities.