Basketball team lets opponent score - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Basketball team lets opponent score

ADVANCE, MO (KFVS) - It wasn't a shot to win the big game, this basket meant more than that.

Kyle Smith has autism and has played basketball for years. Finally, he scored for his first time, thanks to the help of some strangers.

On this snow day, Kyle Smith is playing around with his new friends.

They bonded over a pretty neat experience last weekend.

Smith plays for Richland. Last weekend they faced off against the Advance 6th grade basketball team.

Kyle has autism and has played basketball for three years, but has never scored a point.

Then, at last week's game, the Advance 6th graders decided to change that.

"Kyle was dribbling down the court, and we decided to just let him shoot and we didn't play any defense on him," said Advance 6th grader Layton Keith.

"They kept giving him the ball and he made a 3-pointer, that was his first points in three years," said mom Zenita Smith.

Kyle's mom Zenita Smith says it has always been Kyle's dream to make a 3-point shot.

"When it's your kid, there's just no words for it," said Smith.

"I made the decision there that we was going to get him a bucket one way or another," said Advance Coach Tim Crader.

Crader said he didn't know anything about Kyle before the game, but could see his determination during warm ups.

"You could see it in his face, he was chomping at the bit to get the ball and wanting to shoot," said Carder.

The 6th grade Advance players agreed, Kyle needed to score.

"Because no other team has done that," said 6th grader Dylan Taylor. "It's not always about winning,” said Ridley Bailey. ”It's about having fun," said Dalton Meador.

Not knowing the Advance team, after the game mom Zenita Smith posted on Facebook, not only about her son's accomplishments, but as a way to thank the strangers for their kindness.

That post has been shared close to 100 times.

"We still lost by 10 points, it almost felt like they had a win because you know Kyle did score," said Richland Coach Jesse Brown.

"I told my kids I was very proud of them for what they did,” said Crader.

This wasn't about a win on the scoreboard, this was a win because it brought these communities closer together.

"I think I've made some friends for life and so has Kyle," said Smith.

Even though they didn't realize it going into the game, this isn't the first time these players and Kyle have met. They played baseball against each other last year, and let him get a run.

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