Grannies ball out in Topeka tournament

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TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - Grannies laced up their shoes and hit the court today for the Kansas Senior Games Granny Basketball Tournament.

The Granny Basketball League was created in 2005 to provide fun, competitive exercise for women ages 50 and up.

The game is played with six players on each side – modeled after a style of play dating back to 1898.

Uniforms reflect the nostalgic style as well, complete with bloomers, middy blouses, and knee-high stockings.

"It gets so much enthusiasm from other women, and they see it and they're like 'I didn't know that was an option.'” Gayle Sigurdson, captain of the Kansas Grayhawkers, said. “I think people are surprised, too, when they see how competitive it is, and that it's friendly, but there's a serious game going on out there."

Players are awarded three points if they make a shot “granny” style.

“The granny shot is the traditional bend down, bring the ball between your knees and bring it up,” Sigurdson said. “The reason it's three points is it's the easiest shot to block, because it's coming from so low. So we give extra points for getting a granny shot."

The women wear matching, fun-colored socks to tell the teams apart.

The Cedar Rapids Sizzlers took first place in the tournament, followed by the Oklahoma Twisters, Classic Roadrunners, and Kansas Grayhawkers.