Pierce Harlin is 17 years old and has been in Special Olympics since 2013. While he has competed in tennis and bowling, basketball is his specialty. Pierce is the youngest of five children and developed his athletic skills watching his big brother Brett play basketball.
Pierce’s position on the team is point guard. “Pierce has a good basketball IQ and we welcome him to our team,” said Coach Brad Bowers. Coach Dana Bowers said, “Pierce is eager to be a better player.”
“Special Olympics is where Pierce is allowed to participate and be fully engaged and not sit the bench,” said Pierce’s mom, Cheryl. “He is a part of a team.”
When there is a break in the action, Pierce can be seen on the sidelines dancing and doing his impersonation of Michael Jackson.
Pierce attends a local high school during the week.
Josh Cioffi has been in Special Olympics for 20 years. He has competed in basketball, bowling, track, soccer, swimming and floor hockey. Basketball is his favorite sport to compete in, although football is his favorite spectator sport – and the Chargers are “his team.”
Participating in Special Olympics is fun for Josh because he has made many friends and he likes his coaches. “I enjoy having Josh on the team. He is a good perimeter shooter,” said Basketball Coach Brad Bowers.
“He is very dedicated to his team,” Coach Dana Bowers said.
During the week, Josh is a member of a local day work program.