Here’s to a successful season

The Lake City Falcons senior girls basketball team travelled to seven tournaments this season in Valemount ...

Editor:

The Lake City Falcons senior girls basketball team travelled to seven tournaments this season in Valemount, Kamloops, Hope, Vanderhoof, Quesnel, Maple Ridge and Zones in Prince George.

We also hosted a four-team tournament of our own.

Our school board has been put in a position to make cuts year after year to a budget that shrinks and school sports have been hit hard in terms of financial support for travel from the district, essentially putting all the expenses of playing sports with the athletes and their families.

The amalgamation of the two secondary schools has completely eliminated cross-town play, so we are forced to travel to play (and learn) the game.

The team makes efforts to fundraise and every year we ask the community businesses for their support.

They have continually stepped up to take part in our sponsor-a-player program for our girls to assist with travel and we cannot thank them enough for supporting such a great cause.

Of these sponsors, four of them offered to donate to our home tournament, as well as the season, to make it one of the most giving tournaments in the province.

We were able to offer huge trophies for first and second place, multiple first- and second-team all-stars for each team, player of the game awards, juice boxes and oranges for each player in each game, lunch on Saturday, sweets for our concession and a very unique “Champions” T-shirt to be awarded to each member of the first place team.

The Caledonia Kermodes from Terrace were very proud to leave Williams Lake sporting the Lake City Pioneer Classic tournament champions T-shirts awarded.

I was completely overwhelmed by the generosity of our sponsors and cannot thank them enough.

I believe that this generosity will help to make next year’s tournament even bigger.

For the girls on the team, hosting a home tournament is one of only a few games played to show our community what we are capable of.

A coach out of North Vancouver even mentioned how our community comes together to cheer on our teams and support our young athletes.

And let’s not forget our local paper who can make a story of a fourth-place finish just to acknowledge the hard work of the girls on the team who got player of the game or all-star awards at our tournaments.

Of course parent support has been huge in the success of our team. They are the ones helping to pay, drive and offer encouragement weekend after weekend.

I have been very privileged to be able to coach these girls who commit to 7 a.m. and late night practices three times a week, full weekends from November through to the end of February and to becoming better players every chance they get.

Every member on this year’s team was on the honour roll and can be found in leadership and peer tutoring classes, as First Nations Role Model Candidates, volunteers and all around role models and positive people in their school and community in a “pay-it-forward” fashion.

Thank you so much to everyone who volunteered their time,  made donations and cheered us on, helping to make this season such a success.

Brigette Peel

Lake City Falcons community coach, Sr. Girls Basketball Team