Salmon Arm and Kamloops Special Olympian basketball teams joined forced for a recent basketball tournament hosted by Special Olympics British Columbia (SOBC) in Vancouver.
The combined team called themselve SAMKAM and competed against 29 other teams from across the province.
Competing in the B1 division, SAMKAM played hard and earned fourth place in the tournament.
Despite not winning the event, the team’s spirits were high as they were awarded the Fair Play Award for being the most sportsmanlike team in the tournament.
“It felt pretty good,” said Kathleen Nelson. “I didn’t even know we won until they gave us the trophy,” She exclaimed.
Nelson also stated it was a great experience and that playing with athletes from Kamloops gave her an opportunity to learn new skills.
In addition to playing in the tournament, two of the Kamloops athletes were chosen to play in the All-Star game.
There was another All-star game against the coaches in which, all three of SAMKAM coaches were selected to play. It was a long exhilarating weekend and as they travelled back home they celebrated their effort and sportsmanship.
“This is what Special Olympics is all about! Through the joy of sports, the athletes experience teamwork, friendship, and fair play; they develop respect for coaches, judges, and competitors and so much more,” said Joyce Sotski.