Raiders Place Second at State NYO

Monday, April 20 2015

(Courtesy: NYO Alaska)

Unalaska’s young athletes finished big this weekend at the 45th Annual Native Youth Olympics.

The Raiders team took second place overall at the state competition.

Junior Kim Gumera was the male Athlete of the Meet. He took first place for Alaskan High Kick and Two-Foot High Kick, and second place for One-Foot High Kick.

Unalaska’s Kaye Gumera, Connor McCracken, Neil Bucaneg, Brian Conwell and Alyssa Roxas also placed in their events.

The 500 Alaskan athletes at this year’s state NYO were joined for the first time in decades by a foreign delegation, coming all the way from the Yukon Territory in Canada.

Organizer Nicole Johnston says the tournament has tripled in size since she was an athlete, and continues growing because of its emphasis on traditional values.

"And that's part of what the games are about," she says. "You rely and depend on each other traditionally, hundreds of years ago. And through this day, with these games, everyone helps each other, and to get to the top you can’t do it by yourself -- you've gotta have some help.”

The 10 events making up NYO are adaptations of exercises used by hunters to cultivate the physical and mental skills necessary for subsistence hunting.

This year's state tournament was held for the first time this year at the Alaska Airlines Center in Anchorage. The Raiders also competed at a tournament in Seward earlier this month. 

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