Thursday, January 30, 2014

Haida Gwaii Basketball team gaining notice in Vancouver and beyond

Photo from Vcr Province story

The story of the Queen Charlotte Secondary School Basketball program is spreading beyond the islands of Haida Gwaii.

The High School Basketball team which is competing in the ultra competitive AAAA circuit this year, has been profiled in the Vancouver Province this week. As Howard Tsumura, the Province's Basketball reporter examines why a small school on a distant island off the North Coast, is taking on and in many cases succeeding, against the largest of schools of the lower mainland.

As we outlined on the blog in December, both Queen Charlotte Secondary and Prince Rupert's Charles Hays were involved in a high profile North Vancouver tournament, with both teams gaining notice from the southern media. At that December tournament, the Queen Charlotte Saints were winners of the consolation round.

The Saints followed that tournament up with another journey to the Lower Mainland in January, this time to challenge some of the AAAA squads of the region. A successful trip which, provided for five wins and one loss against some of the top teams in Vancouver Basketball.

All of that exposure down south is making for a fairly high profile now, with word of the story of the Saints spreading across BC and indeed beyond the provincial borders. This week, they went national, as the Province story gained distribution through the news feed.

In one instance, the accolades have stretched as far as to Mike Halford's twitter feed. With the correspondent for NBC's Pro Hockey Talk giving a shout out to Tsumura's article and the program at Queen Charlotte Secondary.

You can review the Province article here.

It's a fascinating look at the program that the Saints are running and a great story that provides a glimpse into the competitive nature of basketball on Haida Gwaii, as the School makes its preparations for British Columbia Basketball's Big Show of  the Provincials set for Langley in March.

Getting to that tournament however, is becoming a bit of a discussion point on Haida Gwaii.

With the School Board declining to approve the trip to provincials for the moment, while they sort our some other issues regarding a planned side trip to the Junior All Native Tournament scheduled in Kamloops during Spring Break.

You can learn more about that issue from the Haida Gwaii Observer article on the topic.

Considering the success of the program and the work that the coaches and students have put into this year's challenging schedule, one imagines that at some point an agreement on the outstanding issues will come together, and the Saints will be making their plans for Langley.

Once there, and based on their play so far in 2013-14 they could become a larger story for the Province when they wrap up their Provincials coverage in March.

You can review more of our items of note on High School Basketball in the Northwest and Haida Gwaii from our archive page.

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