Kitamaat, Gitwinksihlkw qualify for All Native Tournament

It was four days of basketball action at the 2012 All Native Qualifying Tournament held last week as  16 teams from as far away Vancouver competed for a spot in the annual tournament.

In the final game of the women’s division, the Nuxalk Nation from Bella Coola played against Gitwinksihlkw.

Both teams traded the top position many times throughout the game, with Bella Coola taking the lead in the first and second quarter. In the third quarter, Gitwinksihlkw fought back, leading 39 to 41 at the end of the quarter. In the last few minutes of the final quarter, there was a frenzy of shooting as the two teams traded the lead. In the end, Gitwinksihlkw secured their position in the 2012 All Native with a final score of 55-50.

Nine men’s senior teams battled for a spot in the tournament, with the final game involving the Haisla Pride from Kitamaat and Terrace in another intense final game.

Terrace tried to keep up with Kitamaat for the first half of the game, and finally got close by the end of the third quarter, with a score of 61-65 for Haisla Pride. In the fourth quarter, Terrace came back strong and in the final five minutes of the game Terrace surpassed Kitamaat with 79-76. Haisla Pride did not take it sitting down, and tied up the score at 85 in the last seconds of the game.

With an extra five minutes on the clock, Kitamaat pushed themselves hard. After a number of fouls by Terrace, including a serious five foul shot session, Kitamaat secured their spot in the tournament with 102-85.

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