SPOKANE, Wash. — Hoopfest 2019 is drawing to a close in downtown Spokane as champions are being crowned, teams wrap up the weekend and an NBA star descends on Hooptown USA.
KREM took a look at some of the most unique stories and teams, caught up with Isaiah Thomas and found out who would take home hardware.
NBA Point Guard Isaiah Thomas visits Hoopfest
Saturday, it was Rui Hachimura gracing Hoopfest with his presence.
Today, Isaiah Thomas was in Spokane, but we wasn't just taking it all in.
“When was the last time you played a game of Horse?” asked Sports Director Brenna Greene.
“The other day with my kids,” answered Thomas.
But this game of HORSE wasn't quite the same.
“It was tough to play in a chair. You gotta have upper body strength and be able to have the core work. That's something that was a little different,” said Thomas.
Thomas was here at Hoopfest to play the classic school yard game with Spokane parasport athlete Phillip Croft.
“My coach called and said, ‘Hey are you up for another interview?’" explained Croft. "I said, ‘Yeah sure, what do you want me to do?’" She said, ‘Do you know Isaiah Thomas?’ I'm like, ‘Uh, no.’ She's like, ‘Okay he's going to play HORSE with you during Hoopfest.’ I was like, ‘Okay.’ She was like, ‘You can look him up too.’ So after the end of the call I looked him up and I was like, ‘He's an NBA player?!’”
It was definitely the thrill of a lifetime for Croft, who also got to see Isaiah's competitive side.
“I was surprised how easy he was to trash talk me. When we first met I was like, ‘Hey Isaiah.’ He was like, ‘Hey Philip right? You're going to lose.’ I was like, ‘Wow that came quick.’ But then again he spoke the truth," Croft said.
The plan for the rest of the day for Thomas was to just walk around and take in an event that he definitely respects.
“Hoopfest is just something as a kid, espeically growing up in the state of Washington, you know about at a young age. Any chance I can get to come out here and support any cause and support any program, I'm willing to do so. I'm just happy to be here and be able to interact with people and put smiles on people's faces," Thomas said.
And it's not just an event Thomas respects.
He says his NBA counterparts also are well aware of the tournament, even if their geography may not be totally up to speed.
Former WNBA player Shoni Schimmel wins Women's Elite
Former WNBA player Shoni Schimmel finished her Hoopfest 2019 with some hardware, as her and the rest of her All Rez squad teammates won the Women's Elite bracket.
Schimmel balled out in the final games against Team YCC Canada and Gonzaga alumna Janelle Bekkering.
The game got off to a weird start, as the first few points were played with a men's ball instead of a women's ball. Schimmel had an explosive game to carry All Rez to victory, but a second game had to be played. This was because All Rez had lost their first game while Team YCC Canada were undefeated, and Hoopfest brackets are double-elimination.
So they did it all over again, and Schimmel was too much for Bekkering and YCC Canada for a second straight game, bringing home the title.
"A lot of us don't like losing, and for us, we took it personal, because we shouldn't have lost that [first] game," Schimmel said. "It was like 18 to 20, and it was a 9:30 a.m. game. For us, we learned our lesson, and sometimes you got to learn how to lose before you learn how to win."
Shadle Park's Jakobe Ford wins Slam Dunk Competition
The Slam Dunk Competition presented by MultiCare Health Systems was won by a local name, as Shadle Park High School's Jakobe Park brought the crowd to its feet at the Nike Center Court.
The 360 alley-oop dunk got the crowd rocking, and Park said he did it after seeing the dunk on YouTube.
"It feels good because I've been in it the last three years, but didn't really make it to the second day," Ford said. "I didn't even make it to the second day, so it feels good to win it finally."
After Ford threw it down, there wasn't really any doubt on who was taking home top honors.
Sharpshooter from California takes home a Toyota RAV 4 in the Toyota Shootout
A sharpshooter named David from California is taking home a brand new Toyota RAV 4 after winning the Toyota Shootout at Hoopfest 2019.
The contest for the car started with half-court shots. David hit a shot, but then a shooter named Josiah from right here in Spokane responded with a make of his own.
After that, a three-point shootout was held. David sunk his first shot, and Josiah couldn't answer, meaning the man from California was taking home a new set of wheels.
'Last Dunk before the Hunk': Bride-to-be and her bachelorette party celebrate with Hoopfest
It may not be the usual way people celebrate their upcoming wedding, but Hoopfest isn't just any old event.
Janelle LeMeux and her group of bridesmaids decided to celebrate LeMeux's upcoming nuptials by playing in the world's largest 3-on-3 basketball tournament.
"We slam dunk all the time, so last dunk," Janelle LeMeux, who is getting married on July 20, said.
At the end of the weekend, the group is just happy they got to play ball, and that they made it through the weekend, according to bridesmaid Rochelle Miller.
"We survived three days, so we're breathing, recovering, hydrating," Miller said.
Man arrested for allegedly trying to kidnap child, police say
The Spokane Police Department said a 26-year-old man allegedly tried to abduct a child while attending Hoopfest downtown on Sunday afternoon.
According to SPD Corporal Ron Van Tassel, 26-year-old Peter Wilson was walking in the area of Riverfront Park on Sunday afternoon and allegedly asked a woman if the children standing near her belonged to her.
After she said they were, Wilson allegedly wrapped his arms around the child without warning, and the mother grabbed the child at the same time, according to Van Tassel.
Wilson then allegedly tried to pull the child away from the mother, at which point she yelled for him to let go, according to Van Tassel.
Several people in the crowd then grabbed onto an allegedly combative Wilson and held him to the ground until police arrived, Van Tassel said.