(Photo by Monica D. Spencer)

Behind the scenes of an MCC sporting event

While many people attend and support Mesa Community College’s numerous sporting events, few know what exactly goes into everything that happens to make these events a reality..

Some of the necessities of such sporting events include assigning referees, getting a timekeeper, finding someone to man the ticket booth and open up the gates. 

Somebody needs to be in charge of getting it all done.

That is where people like Mike Lavella come into play.

Lavella is the assistant athletic director, and the equipment manager, at Mesa Community College and is in charge of keeping everything up and running.

However, there is so much that goes into this task however, which is why according to Lavella himself, it is hard to narrow down what exactly goes into the daily happenings of an event.

“That’s hard to answer, because every sport I guess you could say is different”, Lavella noted. 

He mentioned how it can change depending on the venue, the sport being played, and a variety of other factors.  

“For indoor sports, there’s the setup of the gym, pulling out the bleachers, setting up the scoring table. Outdoors, it’s opening up the gate, turning on the clock, manning the press box.”

Some things though, according to Lavella, are the same across both. Tasks like these are essential to keeping MCC’s reputation of being a tightly run ship, according to Lavella.

Another huge contributor to the overall production of sporting events at MCC is Dylan Kessler.

Kessler works for the digital media side of sporting events by running the social media accounts, taking photos of the events, updating the websites, things of that nature. 

For Kessler, his day tends to start way before the game starts, similar to Lavella.

“During a game day, I would typically arrive about 2-3 hours before the event begins,” Kessler said. “I help out with setting up the score table, audio, and the live stream, which takes about an hour.”

After the setup is complete, Kessler is then in charge of taking photos of the action, running the live stream, and making sure the audio is working during the duration of the event.

Once the game is complete, he ensures everything is put away properly and things are cleaned before he leaves.

Of course, with his hands full with all these tasks, some things are bound to go wrong. That’s why, according to Kessler, his job is important.

“I would say my job is very important as I help with any technical difficulties we might have during an event,” Kessler stated.

 If anything goes awry on the technical side of things, it is his job to make sure it is fixed as soon as possible. Which, given the live nature of sporting events, can be a nightmare to deal with. 

Both Kessler and Lavella are key figures in making sporting events at MCC so successful. 

However, they are not the only people involved in the overall production of these events.

These people can range from the referees who help officiate the games, the ticket takers who help fans into the venue, and the security who helps keep everyone in attendance safe.

Everyone involved helps provide a fun and memorable experience.


  • Keythin Thomas

    Keythin is a journalism major and is an avid sports fan. He has lived and breathed valley sports since he was in preschool. When not pouring over stat sheets or the latest sports, he enjoys watching movies, playing video games, and hanging out with friends and family.