The Australian Catholic University has claimed a second consecutive overall title at the recently held UniSport Australia Indigenous Nationals.
Hosted on Turrbal and Yugara country by Queensland’s University of Technology, the week-long multi-sport mixed competition provided Indigenous student-athletes from 29 tertiary institutions the opportunity to compete across four sports.
Basketball, touch football, netball and volleyball round-robin style competitions were held, with a knockout style finals system implemented to determine each sport’s champions.
The University of Adelaide defeated Australian Catholic University 39-29 in the basketball final, held at Carina’s Rowland Cowan stadium on Monday.
Tuesday saw the touch football competition held at Fairfield’s JF O’Grady Memorial Park, with University of Newcastle the eventual victors.
They comfortably defeated The Australian Catholic University 7-1.
The netball competition was won by The University of Queensland, who were too strong for Monash University (22-15) in the final held at Nathan’s Nissan Arena on Wednesday.
The same venue held Thursday’s volleyball competition which was eventually won by Griffith University, defeating Curtain University 2-nil.
UniSport chief executive Mark Sinderberry said he was pleased with both the sporting and cultural outcomes of the competition.
“The event brought together all elements of what the Indigenous Nationals stands for, from
the cultural significance of the opening ceremony, the four-day festival of sport and the ability of Indigenous and Torres Strait Islander student-athletes from across the country to connect through sport”, he said.
QUT pro-vice chancellor Angela Barney-Leitch said there was a high level of sportsmanship displayed across all four sporting disciplines.
“I was really impressed by the level of skill I saw on the fields and courts, but what was more important was watching the students show great sportsmanship and develop connections within their teams and with other teams,” she said.
In addition to the individual sport and overall titles, a spirit of the games title was also awarded to the institution deemed to have displayed the most spirit and sportsmanship by their teams.
The University of Tasmania was the recipient institution for this award, after receiving the most votes by member institutions, umpires, referees and staff.
Indigenous student-athlete scholarships were also offered to two of the games’ most promising student athletes to support them in both their academic and sporting endeavours.
Wiradjuri pre-service high school teacher Quincy Ross from The University of Newcastle and Bibbulman Nyoongar Arts student Rebeka Morrison from The University of Western Australia each received a $5000 scholarship.
Next year’s games will be held by Victoria’s Monash University.