Basketball players defend bullied cheerleader

Desiree and friends

Desiree Andrews, Miles Rodriguez, Scooter Terrien and Chase Vazquez deserve our praise.

Anyone blessed to know them should be beaming.

Rodriguez, Terrien and Vazquez play basketball for Lincoln Middle School in Kenosha, Wisconsin. During a game, they noticed that a cheerleader with Down syndrome was being bullied.

So what did they do?

They walked off the court and confronted the bully.

“When I heard they were talking about her, it kind of, like, made me mad,” Rodriguez told NBC affiliate TMJ4. “A couple of us went over there and were like, ‘Can you guys just stop? That’s not right.’ ” Desiree Smile

This happened last year, but their friendship has only grown. The players are wrapping up middle school, but the gym was renamed “D’s House” in honor of Andrews.

Asked by TMJ4 what words she would use to describe the boys, Desiree said, “Sweet, awesome, kind and amazing.”

Desiree’s father, Cliff Andrews, is appreciative of the boys’  actions.

“I was floored,” he told “This whole experience has been amazing.”

Desiree wanted to be on the cheerleading team because it combines her two passions: music and dance. She’s a fan of the popular show “Glee,” which includes a character with Down syndrome.

“She told me, ‘If she can do it, I can do it,’ ” Cliff Andrews said.

According to TMJ4, the Kenosha City council is planning on presenting the boys with a citizenship award soon.

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Photo Credit: TMJ4,

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