In partnership with the City of Hartsville Parks and Recreation department, the semi-pro basketball team, the Florence Wildcats have chosen Coach T.B. Thomas Sports Center in Hartsville as their home court for this season. The Florence Wildcats home opener is set for Saturday, May 13 beginning at 5 p.m. The Wildcats will face the Petersburg Cavaliers of Petersburg, Virginia. The Wildcats open the home stretch at 2-3, while Petersburg comes to town 4-3.

“We’re excited about hosting the Florence Wildcats for their home games this season. It’s something unique to offer the residents of this area to be able to come out and watch semi-pro basketball. The organization has been great to work with and I believe the fans are going to enjoy themselves coming out to watch this team,” says Craig Goodman, Director of City of Hartsville Parks and Recreation.

The Wildcats’ slogan is “Community first, then basketball.” While they are looking for a great season on the court, they want to be more than just a basketball team for the Pee Dee.

“We want the entire Pee Dee to come out and support the team. The Wildcats are your pro basketball team. We want the children’s heroes to be accessible to them. Finally, the kids can look up to people that played on the same playgrounds as them and went to the same schools as them, and that gives them hope”, said Wildcats’ Director of Community and Public Relations, Nimai Garrett.

The Florence Wildcats are mounted with players from around the Pee Dee area and will continue to grow that pathway to basketball for area players. Among those local players on the roster is Hartsville’s own Heyvis Jackson, a key player in the success of the Wildcats.

“Playing for the Wildcats is a great experience. I’ve met a great group of guys and it’s given me a chance to play the game I love again. It’s going to be a great feeling to play in the town where everything started for you with family and friends who haven’t seen me play since my senior year of high school. It’s going to be a great feeling,” says Heyvis Jackson, local player for the Florence Wildcats.

The Florence Wildcats will play all their homes games this season at the Coach T.B. Thomas Sports Center located at 701 W. Washington St. in Hartsville. Visit the Florence Wildcats on Facebook for complete list of games and more information.