On Oct. 13, Queens College hosted its fifth annual Midknight Madness event to officially kick off the basketball season.
“Midknight Madness is a celebration, pep rally and kick-off for the men and women’s basketball teams. This is a good time to bring the entire student body together to have fun, introduce them to the sports team and just participate in loads of activities,” Chyna Jude, Director of Athletics at Queens College, said.
Since its debut five years ago, the student body and sports teams have made the event a season highlight for both the men’s and women’s basketball teams.
This year’s festivities included a routine by QC’s dance team, a three-on-three game between the men’s and women’s teams, a skills challenge and a three-point dunk contest.
“This is my fifth year taking part in Midknight Madness, and I feel like this year was one of our best. In the beginning, we’d have outside acts come in, like jugglers, but that didn’t really have anything to do with basketball so I don’t know if that gave off the right vibe for the season. But this year, we made it more like the NBA All-Star Weekend, getting the players involved and really making it feel more like a true basketball event,” Joya McFarland, a senior guard on the women’s basketball team, said.
“This event is always a nice thing to have before we start our season since it really shows the team how much support [we] have from the students and people from the community,” Diego Maldonado, senior guard, said.
The dunk contest and skills challenge highlighted the evening with the men showing off an array of spectacular dunks.
In the skills challenge, however, the women were the ones to steal the show, showing off impressive ball handling and shooting skills.
The teams hope to apply the energy present during the rally to the upcoming season.
Last season, the women ended with an overall record of 21-9 and a conference record of 15-5.
“Ever since Coach Elizabeth came on board, the women’s team has been doing better and better. This season, our hopes are to do even better than last season and just try to have fun,” McFarland said.
On the men’s side, much of the same sentiments were felt on their prospects for the upcoming season.
The men finished off their regular season with an 11-14 record and a conference record of 9-14.
Though their record was not as impressive as the women’s, their enthusiasm for this season is just as high.
“Our goal for this season is to aim for the championship. I know every team says that, but that is seriously the goal for this season. To get there, we’ll just take it one step a time and try to win one game at a time. With our current roster, I really think it’s possible” Maldonado said.