The fifth annual Hoops for Hunger 3 on 3 Basketball Tournament was held Dec. 23.

For the fifth year, Kevin Currans has organized the Hoops for Hunger 3 on 3 Basketball Tournament. Basketball players, in grades four through eight, from area towns form teams and pay a $60 registration fee. All the money goes to the Sleepy Eye and New Ulm food shelves.

This year’s event was held on Monday afternoon and evening , Dec. 23, at St. Mary’s Gym and Field House.

“We originally had 30 teams committed — 20 boys teams and 10 girl teams,” said Currans. “Two girls teams cancelled 24 hours before tip off, due to sickness, so we only had 28 teams come and play.

“We ask for $60 from each team, but many were more generous than that, so we managed to raise $1,850 for New Ulm and Sleepy Eye food shelves with 28 teams.”

Currans said teams came for seven area schools: St. Mary's, Sleepy Eye Public, New Ulm Public, Westbrook-Walnut Grove, Cedar Mountain, St. James, and New Ulm Cathedral.

Each team got to play four games that were 22 minutes long. To keep things fun and light they never keep score, said Currans. They just play and have fun.

“This is the first year where we had a division that actually kept score,” said Currans. “We tried this with the 7th and 8th grade boys. We had a play off and New Ulm 8th graders topped St. Mary’s 8th graders for the title. Almost every one of the boys in this division said they preferred keeping score and having a playoff, so it's likely that we'll do it again for this division next year.”

Currans appreciated how parents and players were understanding and supportive of the young volunteer officials at the event. “Especially the ones who did the 7th and 8th grade boys where we kept score,” he said, “that made their job much more challenging.”