The game may have been a close one, but a fun time was had Saturday by all at the Bob Taylor Memorial Granny Basketball Game that tested the talents of 11 prominent California-area men against the Granny Basketball League of Jefferson City.
As the event was sponsored by the California Nutrition Center, all ticket and raffles sales went toward the roof replacement project for the center.
After attempting to closely follow the "granny rules" of the unique form of basketball, "The Old Gray Mules" lost to the grannies 24-20 at the California Middle School gym. Despite the loss, California Nutrition Center director Kim Drummond said approximately $1,500 was raised toward the roof project to replace each roof atop the center. Drummond said donations are still being accepted from individuals and businesses to assist in the funding, of which the construction should start this December.
The 12 "granny rules" that were to be played by included a few differences from traditional basketball. For instance, no player may run or jump, but may "hurry" to their desired spot on the court. The ball must only be dribbled twice per possession per player and "hovering" or any other impediment on progress is not allowed.
Another interesting note is the Granny league did not show up to the court in traditional uniforms in the very least. According to the rulebook, players wear 1920s style uniforms complete with bloomers, middy blouses and knee-high stockings.
As for the game itself, Drummond said the grannies thoroughly enjoyed themselves.
"It was a close contest, but the grannies said they had so much fun," Drummond said. "They said we were the best team they'd ever played."
This sentiment may have stemmed from a referee calling a foul on Moniteau County Sheriff Tony Wheatley. As soon as the whistle blew and the call was made, two deputies with the sheriff's office crossed the court to detain the referee.
"Normally they don't win, but they appreciated the hospitality," Drummond said. "It was just a great night."