PORTSMOUTH, R.I. (WPRI) — It was senior night at Portsmouth High School for the boys basketball team and Gavin Bicho was on the call.

“He skips through … finds Lucenti … at the buzzer … gets it to fall. And that’s going to do it in Portsmouth, as they storm the court,” the WPHS Live play-by-play announcer broadcasted.

WPHS Live is a student-run broadcast, made up of junior and senior students in Kevin Reilly’s video broadcast journalism class at Portsmouth High School. There are even some volunteers.

“Sports is really just a passion and it means a lot to me,” said Trevor Doherty, a volunteer underclassman at the school. “My brother, he’s actually a pro hockey player in West Virginia. Doing this is, sort of, my way to get closer to him in a way.”

“You need to find your voice and this gives you that opportunity, gives any student that opportunity,” Bicho said.

Part of their study is in the classroom, the other is applied. From shooting to calling the game and all the technical elements behind the scenes, these students do it all, broadcasting their high school’s sporting events live on YouTube.

“Experience is invaluable,” said Reilly. “You can teach a lot of things from your podium in the classroom, but it doesn’t even touch what kids can get when they’re doing it.”

“It’s been a great transformation from when we first started. It was one camera, a lapel mic, a clip right on my shirt, and now two, maybe three, cameras, panels switching back and forth,” Bicho said.

It all started because of the pandemic.

“That really helped our kids provide a service to the community,” Reilly said.

“We cuddled up around the TV and made some popcorn and watched,” said Kate Mahoney, whose son and daughter plays sports at Portsmouth High. “Front row seats.”

Even with fans back in the stands, there’s still demand for the students’ work.

“Almost every game we’ll have a fan from an away team that’s not really aware of what’s going on, they’ll come over and ask us, ‘Where can I find this? My son, his grandma’s down in Florida, she can’t watch the game, I’ve got to send it to her.’ So it is really great that we can provide this for, not just Portsmouth families, but whoever we might be playing,” said Daniel Shea, WPHS Live’s color analyst.

For the students involved, it give them something to be a part of, to work toward their future goals.

“I think that’s the greatest gift you can get as an educator, to see somebody shine in something that you knew they had the propensity to do,” Reilly said.