Saskatchewan softball athlete hopeful for 2020 NAIG
- Brittany Boschman | July 09, 2018
Takoda Morris is pitching her way to compete at the next North American Indigenous Games (NAIG) that will be hosted for the first time in the Maritimes.
Morris is training for the softball tryouts that will take place within the year leading up to NAIG 2020 to be held in Halifax and Millbrook, Nova Scotia.
The 13-year-old from the George Gordon First Nation wants to feel that adrenaline of competing at a national level again. Although she did not bring home a medal, Morris proudly represented Team Saskatchewan last summer as the pitcher for the U16 age category.
“It was pretty cool to go [to NAIG] at such a young age because I was only 12,” she said. “I met a lot of good people older than me and I played a lot of older people…I had fun.”
Morris has played softball since 2014 with the Southey Eagles in the Regina Minor Softball League. Her parents, Brad and Arlene, train Morris at home and take her to practices and tournaments.
“ makes me proud to have a daughter who competes with the best players in North America,” he said. “We hear all the negatives with our young people… [it’s] nice to hear about the youth excelling in sports.”
Morris will be amongst over 500 Saskatchewan athletes who will be competing for a spot to represent their community in the upcoming NAIG – or as Mike Tanton says the ‘Aboriginal Olympics’.
“I believe NAIG an opportunity…for any young Aboriginal person involved in sports,” said Tanton, who will be the assistant chef de mission of NAIG 2020. “It’s easy to get excited when you have such great athletes.”
Halifax Mayor Mike Savage said he is proud that NAIG will be held in his city as it will create an economic boom.
“Every time you bring people to the city, it’s a wonderful thing because you introduce them to Halifax and maybe they’ll come back reconnect,” said Mayor Savage. “The second piece for us is the journey of truth and reconciliation and working together with the Mi’kmaq Sport Council…and with the First Nations people of Nova Scotia.”
NAIG will bring over 5,000 Indigenous athletes which may include Morris.
“I think it’s a big experience for anyone who goes, especially because you’re representing where you’re from,” she said. “ expectations for NAIG 2020 would be to place this time and to do better than we did last time.”