“Nome, it’s a community built on basketball, and the love of basketball,” Rose Gray said. “There’s a lot of camaraderie and brotherhood. It’s just a big family.”
Gray helped organize a watch party in Nome so friends and family could see their very own high school basketball players compete in the state tournament without an expensive flight.
The basketball players’ success at the statewide tournament had family and friends beaming with pride.
“I’m very proud of Peyton and the boys,” Dena Okitkon said. She is a family friend of athlete Peyton who was at the watch party from Nome, said. “Peyton is just a freshman, and the boys did a really good job this year. They fought hard and I’m very happy that they made it to the championships again.”
The Nanooks made it to the championship game before losing to an Anchorage private school. It was no small feat for a small-town team outside Alaska’s road system, who had to win against teams with far more extensive resources. Two of Nome’s athletes, Jade Greene and Finn Gregg, were honored by induction into the all-state team.
Image at top: Jade Greene (No. 13) edges around an athlete from Utqiagvik at the state basketball tournament. Photo by James Mason, used with permission.