Grayson College celebrated its first homecoming this week following the return of basketball to the school. Hundreds of fans — including students, employees, alumni and community members — filled the gym to watch the men’s and women’s teams take on Temple College. The college’s pep band and cheerleading team were also on hand to spur enthusiasm throughout the stands.

“We are extremely pleased with the number of fans who have come out to support the program upon its return,” GC President Jeremy McMillen said. “It’s an exciting time at Grayson College and it’s a great day to be a Viking.”

Four members of the college’s first basketball team were represented at the game. Ronnie Cole, Sherman Perry and Don Marks were in attendance along with the daughter of the deceased Fred Hickey.

As class valedictorian and basketball team captain of the State Champions of Normangee, Texas, Perry received the first ever basketball scholarship to GC. Current GC Board of Trustees Chair Ronnie Cole was the second student to receive a basketball scholarship. Cole was awarded the GC Alumni Board’s inaugural Alumni of the Year award at half-time of the men’s game.

“The Board chose Ronnie based on how he exemplifies leadership, commitment, volunteerism and dedication to Grayson College and its alumni,” GC Alumni Network Chair Joey Guess said.

“I have known Ronnie for over 30 years,” Executive Director of the GC Foundation Randy Truxal said. “He has provided leadership and support when needed in the county, the communities in the county, and Grayson College. Whatever is needed, he is willing to go the extra mile to ensure its success.”

A number of GC alumni were represented within the Fred Douglas High School Alumni group that was in attendance at the game as well.

Seven students represented various student organizations as homecoming court nominees. These students were presented at halftime of the women’s game followed by the king and queen announcement made at half-time of the men’s game. The nominees included Kate Gailyon for Culinary Arts and Hospitality Management, Allyson Edgette for Sisters of Destiny, Kaylee Walters for softball, JaNae McCormack and Connor Hall for Phi Theta Kappa, Shelby Vasquez for cheerleading, Zayla Pope for Student Support Services and Taylor Welch for Psychology Club. Hall and Walters were named homecoming king and queen.

The Lady Vikings came away with the win over Temple, while the men’s team fell short after a hard-fought battle.