Shoshone-Bannock tribal members and performers, along with FHBC members attend the
Big Sky championship tournament games on March 8 in Boise.
BOISE — On Wednesday, March 8, Fort Hall Business Council Chairman Nathan Small, Treasurer Roland Marshall and Councilman Lee Juan Tyler attended the 2023 Men’s & Women’s Big Sky Conference Basketball Championship’s to participate in the halftime performances, along with Miss Shoshone Bannock Kaycee Dixey, Miss Shoshone-Bannock 1st Attendant Sophia Martin, the Ghost Canyon Singers and local dancers.
The 2023 championships took place March 4-8 at the Idaho Central Arena in Boise. The tournament champions received automatic berths to the NCAA Division 1 Basketball Championship. All games were available to stream on ESPN+ and the championship games were aired on the ESPN family of networks.
Miss Shoshone-Bannock Kaycee Dixey and Sophia Martin with the Big Sky Conference Women’s championship winning team Sacramento State University breaking a first time record on March 8. The team defeated the top-seeded Northern Arizona team.
Sacramento State won the Women’s Basketball Tournament Championship for the first time in program history taking down top-seeded Northern Arizona 76-63. Montana State won the Men’s Basketball Tournament Championship against Northern Arizona 85-78. Indigenous player RaeQuan Battle of Montana State from Tulalip, Wash. was named MVP of the tournament. According to Bryson Lester, Director of Communications for the Big Sky Conference, “Battle highlighted the All-Tournament Team.”
The Shoshone-Bannock Tribes along with all tribes of Idaho were recently approached by the Idaho Indian Education Committee and members of the Big Sky Conference staff to be featured during a night of the tournament. According to a Big Sky Conference representative they wanted to offer Idaho Tribes “to have the opportunity to showcase the heritage of their group, on the court with unique elements.”
Miss Shoshone-Bannock Kaycee Dixey and 1st attendant Sophia Martin with the Big Sky Conference Men’s championship winning team Montana State University on March 8. Indigenous athlete RaeQuan Battle of Tulalip, Wash. played for the team.
Miss Shoshone-Bannock, Kaycee Dixey, offered the welcome and introduction to kick off both performances. Ghost Canyon Singers performed two songs, the second was a round dance where players, cheerleaders and fans were able to join in on the celebration. A 30 second PSA (video) with a welcome from Chairman Small and Miss Shoshone-Bannock was featured throughout the championship games on the big screen monitors.
Kaycee Dixey and Sophia Martin also had the opportunity to assist with the championship awards ceremony and were included in the champions team photos. Kaycee was grateful for the opportunity to speak on behalf of the Tribes and enjoyed the experience. She said, “It was fun representing. I would like to thank the Big Sky staff for allowing us to share some of our dances and songs with everyone. Oose!”