Rivalry set aside to let students have game of a lifetime

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CHULA VISTA, Calif. – In front of a packed gymnasium, Eastlake and Bonita Vista High School students and their Baron Buddies peers cruised up and down the court in an emotional basketball game.

"The emotions were going high," said the president of the Barons Buddies club Guy Jester. "It was just awesome. I feel like we are all one. We are all the same."

Baron Buddies consists of a group of students with special needs, and throughout the school year they are paired with high school students to create a sense of unity and companionship.

That was the same message behind the event hosted by Bonita Vista Wednesday.

"That was the purpose of this event, to be a united sports event," said Bonita Vista student body president Alex Huerta. "The fact that different social groups got together and different schools got together shows we are united as one - that's just beautiful."

It didn't matter if you are a Baron or a Titan. The student body showed up loud and proud, cheering and clapping for every basket that fell through the hoop.

"Bringing the two schools together it shows that when we put our differences aside, come together and act as a community," said Huerta.

This was the first time a basketball game like this was held between Bonita Vista and Eastlake High School. Both Huerta and Jester said they hope the two schools will have many more similar events in the future.