DANBURY, Conn. -- It was the throw of the night for Western Connecticut State University senior William Alfiere of Beacon Falls.
Alfiere earned 15 minutes of fame when the numbers of his tickets were called during a Colonials basketball game and he was given the chance to win $5,000 toward his tuition.
All Alfiere had to do was shoot from half-court and get it in the basket. He took a few seconds, the former high school basketball player, to inspect his area, and within a minute, the room was filled with cheering.
With this throw, Alfiere earned $5,000 toward his tuition.
Alfiere, a Dean’s List student who is studying justice and law administration at WCSU, was the senior captain of his high school basketball team in Beacon Falls, but does not play for the university.
“I was at the game and decided to enter the contest and take a shot at the $5,000,” he said. “It sounded fun. When my ticket number was called, I was very excited, thinking ‘wow.’”
As members of the WCSU cheerleading squad lined both sides of the free throw area, Alfiere was given the ball at half court. Was he nervous? “You feel people watching you,” he said.
“I haven’t been in the spotlight on the court like that for a while.” As his shot hit nothing but net, the Feldman Arena at the O’Neill Center erupted into cheers. Alfiere said at that moment he was somewhat in shock. “I didn’t expect to make it,” he said.
“You throw a shot up like that every now and then for fun, but you never expect it to go in. Even Steph Curry would probably only make it one out of every 10 times, and he’s the best shooter, you know? But as soon as I shot it, I knew it was going to go in. It’s one of those feelings you have as a basketball player.”
The half-court contest was sponsored by the university’s Student Government Association, Center for Student Involvement and Office of Student Affairs.
Click here to sign up for Daily Voice's free daily emails and news alerts.