New hall of famers prepare for All Native

  • Jan. 31, 2003 6:00 a.m.

By Heidi Bevington-Two Skidegate basketball players will be inducted into the All Native Basketball Tournament Hall of Fame at this year’s All Native Basketball Tournament in Prince Rupert February 9-15.
Garner Moody and Marvin Pearson, both of the Skidegate Masters, will be inducted into the Hall of Fame at a ceremony Friday Feb. 14.
Mr. Moody, the Skidegate Master’s centre, has played basketball for 34 of his 44 years. His proudest moment as a player came at the All Native tournament final in1981 when his team reached half time 27 points down, but turned the game around to win the championship. He thinks the Skidegate Masters will be one of the top three teams this year, with a good shot at first place.
Mr. Pearson, who has also played as Marvin Collinson, has played basketball since he was 12 or 13. He has played for the Skidegate Masters for 7 years as a guard. He also played with the Skidegate Saints in his youth. Mr. Pearson has an especially vivid memory of a game played with the Skidegate Saints at the Western Canada Basketball Tournament when he was 19 or 20. The Saints were the underdog team, with no fans present in the auditorium, playing against the tough St. Mary’s, Alberta team. “They beat everyone until they ran into us,” says Mr. Pearson.
Seven of the 54 participating teams at this year’s All Native will be from the islands. The tournament is divided into four divisions: Intermediate for youth 21 and under, Masters for men 22-35, Seniors for men 35 and older and a Woman’s division for women of all ages. Skidegate will send teams in all four divisions, and Masset will send teams for the three men’s divisions.
“It’s our world championship,” says Ed Russ will play for the Massett Haida Guardians. He’s been playing at the All Native for close to 20 years, since he was 14 years old. “I don’t know why basketball is so important here. Our elders were into it, and it snowballed from there. We grew up with it. It’s a little bit too soggy around here to do anything else,” he says.
“The All Native is important to me because of friends and family. For instance, I get to see my wife’s family from Alaska. And there are a lot of friends I only get to see at the All Native. It’s also the competition that is unmatched for a native person,” adds Mr. Russ.
The Prince Rupert area has always been a traditional gathering place and fishing ground for the Tsimshian nation, says tournament organizer Conrad Lewis. Groups from as far away as the Nass and Skeena rivers would travel there to fish. In more recent history, the All Native has become a major cultural event with many communities and nations involved. This year players will come from as far away as Hydaburg, Ahousat, Kamloops and Masset, he says.
Mr. Lewis estimates that between 2500 and 3000 people will attend. The All Native has economic as well as cultural significance. The annual event is the largest Prince Rupert hosts, and as much as $2 million dollars could be spent at hotels, restaurants and stores in the city.

Just Posted

Logging protest at Collison Point

Husby crews lock up gear after group led by Old Massett Haida calls for end of logging at Collison

Cullen calls on DFO for quick notice of any salmon closures

MP urges co-operation after DFO releases grim estimates for sockeye, chinook returns

B.C. to protect more habitat for coastal northern goshawk, marbled murrelet

Few new goshawk nests expected on Haida Gwaii, where deer, low numbers are of high concern

Hundreds more Haida Gwaii homes to get high-speed internet

Gwaii Communications wins $4.9-million grant from Canada, B.C., Gwaii Trust to expand local services

On the Wing: Stormy weather in the wild

By Margo Hearne Things have calmed down after the big full-moon tides.… Continue reading

VIDEO: B.C. Mounties reunite veteran with lost military medals

RCMP say Zora Singh Tatla, who served in the army in India for 28 years, is the righful owner

How to keep local news visible in your Facebook feed

Facebook has changed the news feed to emphasize personal connections. You might see less news.

Experts urging caution as rabbits die by the hundreds in B.C. city

Province of B.C. confirms more positive tests for rabbit haemorrhagic disease

Federal government seeks public feedback on pedestrian safety

What safety measures do you think need to improved for pedestrians and cyclists?

Search continues for 10-year-old Montreal boy missing since Monday

Montreal police said they are exploring every possibility in search for Ariel Jeffrey Kouakou

Airline passenger-rights bill claws back protections for travellers: Advocate

Bill C-49 would double tarmac delays, scrap compensation for flights affected by mechanical failures

Canadian research vessel to explore 19th Century shipwrecks

Commissioned this week in Victoria, the RV David Thompson is Parks Canada’s newest vessel

VIDEO: ‘New wave’ of anti-pipeline protests return to Trans Mountain facility

About 100 demonstrators with Protect the Inlet marched to the Burnaby terminal Saturday

B.C. man to plead guilty in connection with hit-and-run that killed teen

Jason Gourlay charged with failure to stop at the scene of accident, attempting to obstruct justice

Most Read