Early this year in March 6 Jnr Koorie Basketball Teams from East Gippsland competed and represented at the VACSAL Statewide Aboriginal Basketball Classic that was held in Shepparton.
Players came from Bairnsdale and the surrounding area’s of Lake Tyers, Lakes Entrance, Lindenow & Sarsfield who set off to Shepparton to compete in the Classic that was held over the long weekend from Saturday 9th – Monday 11th March 2019.
Leading up to the competition the teams had regular training sessions over the weekends including competing and practicing their ball skills in the CLB 3×3 aussie summer basketball tournament that was held on the foreshore in Lakes Entrance. All the hard work paid off when the time came to take the court in Shepparton with all teams playing deadly resulting in 4 out of the 6 teams making finals. The under 16 boys & under 18 girls making the semi finals but unfortunately just couldn’t get over the line and both our under 14 girls & boys making it into the grand finals.
A highlight of many over the weekend was the nail-biting under 14 boys grand final game that caught the attention of a big crowd when going overtime to finish with a 1 point difference in a shoot out of penalty shots at each end of the court with our under 14’s coming home with runners up to Warma Turles , Congratulations to all of them and their coaches.
Overall a Deadly effort by All the BRUS teams that represented East Gippsland in the tournament they have made us all proud and have shown great skill, sportsmanship and leadership to each and every one of their team members.
The opportunity to engage so many young people and community in the Statewide event was made possible by Bairnsdale Regional Unlimited Sports (BRUS). BRUS is a newly formed non for profit Aboriginal Sports Incorporation set up with the aim to work inclusively towards improving the health & wellbeing of the East Gippsland Aboriginal Youth. The incorporation aims to provide pathways, mentoring support through the Koorie Mentor Program and encouraging participation in all sports and recreational activities including cultural activities wherever possible.
By raising funds through sponsorship, grants and in-kind support and volunteers from community enabled a total of 46 Players and their coaches to attend the tournament along with another 30 parents that volunteered, supported and cheered on all the teams over the weekend.
The BRUS board would like to thank everyone that worked extremely hard down to the wire to organise everything for the teams to compete in the tournament.
Acknowledgement and thanks Robbie, Mel & Lakeycha Farnham for the deadly artwork & designs of the uniforms which everybody wore with pride and also Deadly Gippsland for the training shirts designed by Dixon Patten.
Thanks to all the coaches and team managers for their efforts and leadership of all the teams Hugh Pepper, Jeffery Walker Snr, Lana Solomon, Sarah Baxter/Brown, Bek White, Margaret Pearce, Ringo Morgan & Rod Harrison.
Thankyou to all our Sponsors, Bairnsdale (LAN) Local Aboriginal Network/Aboriginal Victoria, (BKYC) Bairnsdale Koorie Youth Council, Deadly Gippsland/GippsSPORT, (LAJAC) Local Aboriginal Justice Advisory Committee, (GEGAC) Gippsland & East Gippsland Aboriginal Corporation, Skillinvest, (EGIFVRAG) East Gippsland Indigenous Family Violence Regional Action Group.
And last but definitely not the least thankyou to our Supporters, Parents, Volunteers, Scorers and Community that helped out along the way. We look forward to building and strengthening BRUS to support our future generations and encourage all to be Healthy & Active in community.
Future events and activities are in the planning to continue to engage our young people and community which includes a 1 day Basketball Coaching Course delivered through Basketball Victoria in the next few months, NAIDOC Aboriginal Sports awards in July. Also the challenge has begun to raise funds and organise for the next Statewide Competition, the “VACSAL Statewide Jnr Footy/Netball Carnival” that will be held in Echuca around September/October.
For more information about how you can support BRUS and the East Gippsland Aboriginal Youth, to become a member or to make a contribution towards our next event please feel free to contact us via email on firstname.lastname@example.org ‘Be Deadly in all Sports”
Written by Alice Pepper