Column: Indian girls head to Jim Thorpe Native American Games

"As the Summer Olympics approach, we are reminded of the determination and endurance it takes for skilled athletes to bring home a medal. I met a group of young girls who are using those traits this week competing at the Jim Thorpe Native American Games in Oklahoma City.

Various tribes are represented by seven members of the ITS All-Stars 15-and-under basketball team, sponsored by Inter Tribal Sports Inc., which is based in Temecula. Since April, the girls have practiced at the Soboba Sports Complex twice a week.

“Parents bring them here and to all tournaments we travel to,” head coach Mike Castello said. “It’s a coming-together for different tribes. It takes them outside their regular experiences and gives them the opportunity to visit other reservations.”

Dolores Odom regularly made the trip to Soboba, near San Jacinto, from the Santa Rosa Reservation, in the mountains above Anza, so her daughter, Ashlie Bohannon, could be on the ITS All-Stars."

Get the Story:
Diane A. Rhodes: Girls basketball team at Native American Games (The Riverside Press-Enterprise 6/14)

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