FOLEY -- Six players on the Foley boys' basketball team involved in Big Brothers Big Sisters were joined by their "little brothers" on the court before last night's game against Albany.

The kids got to sit next to the coach during pre-game warm ups and stand next to their "big brothers" during the national anthem. Each "little" also received a basketball signed by the entire team.

The "bigs" say memorable nights like this are the reason they joined the Big Brothers program.

Joe Bastin with "little brother" Iean. (Photo: Isaac Schweer, WJON)

"I knew it was a good program and I had some friends who were in it [growing up]," says senior Kyle Kipka. "They talked about it all the time and I was jealous -- I wanted to help out the same way."

"It's been a wonderful experience," says senior Joe Bastin, who was named 2016 High School Big Brother of the Year. "Getting to know [little brother Iean] over the years, it's very rewarding."

For seniors like Austin Janson and Andrew Klucas, it was one of the last memories they'll make with their "little brothers" before heading to college.

"We have their parents email address and phone number, so we can keep in contact," Janson says.

"When I was in sixth grade, I had a big brother who I still keep in touch with," Klucas says. "So I hope to stay in touch with my [little brother] -- it made a big impact on me, so I figured I better do something for them."

 

Photo: Isaac Schweer, WJON