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More than 40 years after patrolling the hardwood for the powerhouse UBC Thunderbirds women’s basketball teams of the 1970s, Sharon Williams and Judi McBride were back at War Memorial Gym Monday.

The inaugural Americas Masters Games in the Pan-American region were held recently at the University of British Columbia. The 9-day competition, featuring 20 different sporting events, is open to competitors from around world who meet the minimum age requirement of 30 years. This event is designed to complement the World Masters Games and create a regular opportunity for Masters Athletes to compete in the Americas region.

Williams and McBride returned to their old stomping grounds and lead their team, ‘The Diehards’, to a 47-32 victory over the Brisbane Dazzlers. The win gave them the gold medal in the Americas Masters Games 60+ women’s basketball competition.

“It felt like coming home,” said Williams. “It’s where we played and met all of our lifelong friends. You get to go and run up and down the court, then go and have a beverage with people you’ve known for 20 to 30 years.”

“We were disappointed we didn’t beat the thirty year olds,” added Williams. “But we were happy we beat the sixty year olds.”

Fellow T-Bird ‘Diehards’ Wendy White, Kathy Lambert, and Rose Sebellin joined Williams and McBride in the victory.


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