Rez Ball - Window Rock vs. Monument Valley

It has been a while since I photographed basketball at the Fort Defiance field house. I had forgotten just how crowded the gymnasium is there. The walls of the gym are only about 12 inches from the edge of the court on each end, leaving no safe place to make photos from along the baseline.

Instead I sat in the doorway of the gym, half in and half out, my shoulder against the wall. It was the best I could do while staying out of the way of the players and the referees.

The games were intense (as always) and even though the Window Rock girls lost by 21 points the crowd was still behind them the whole game. The boys game looked like it was going to be lopsided, with Window Rock taking off to a 12 point lead at the end of the first quarter, but by half-time they were pretty even. In the end Window Rock won 80-75 in a solid and energetic game.

I am still amazed at how big the sport of basketball is to people on the Navajo Nation. The arena was sold out and people were turned away at the doors. I often think it is only the basketball coverage that makes people read our newspaper.
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