Important resources to help you navigate the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic in Wisconsin
Hub for reliable, timely news about COVID-19 pandemic

‘I just love basketball:’ Minnesota high school seniors honor team manager with down syndrome

Emma Dalton (Credit: Kathy Dalton)

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Towards the end of every sports season in high school, there’s a senior night to honor the players for their final year on the team.

Maple Grove senior Emma Dalton has been the varsity girls basketball coach for the last four years.

On Feb. 18, on Senior Night she was honored along with senior player Abby Schulte.

But for the first time, head coach Mark Cook let Emma suit up for the game, run through the tunnel with all the starting players and warm up on the court before the game.

“She definitely deserves it because she’s just as much a part of the team as the rest of us,” Schulte said.

As the only seniors on the team, Schulte and Dalton have become good friends over the years.

“It’s just been really fun to have another senior with me in a different capacity than a teammate, someone who is always rooting for us and always positive,” Schulte said.

This is a team that considers inclusion just as much of a win, as the final score.

“I just think it’s a really cool thing that she got to do and I’m so happy for her,” Schulte said.

“I just love basketball,” Dalton said. Dalton will continue playing basketball after graduation. She starts on a Special Olympics team this spring.

Notice: you are using an outdated browser. Microsoft does not recommend using IE as your default browser. Some features on this website, like video and images, might not work properly. For the best experience, please upgrade your browser.