RAPID CITY, SD In the wake of the racial tensions in
Charlottesville, Va., a local lacrosse team is collaborating with
the University of Virginia to help bring about change.
The 7 Flames Lacrosse program in Rapid City is partnering with
UVA to host a Native American healing game in place of their annual
"The game of lacrosse is different than any other game you'll
ever play," said UVA Head Coach Lars Tiffany. "Because this game
actually really ties in to the Native American way, the balance
of love of nature, love of family and sense of community centers
around a sport."
A game that was once played to overcome conflict in the Native
American culture is now being used as a platform for the Charlottesville
community and students to heal from the tensions of social controversy.
Americans historically played lacrosse to resolve issues between
tribes. Now, two Native American 7 Flames Lacrosse players,
and Coach Hall, along with representatives from five different
tribes, will host a healing game to share their way of overcoming
"The game has provided everything from teaching our young kids
- our young boys - engagement of war." said Cody Hall, coach of
7 Flames Lacrosse. "The historical value of it is that long ago
we went into battle hand to hand combat
we would walk with
a Chanupa, our pipe, on one leg, and then we would have our scull
cracker on the other leg. And what that signified is that we come
"I think it's a good thing that we are going to UVA to show
our part of our culture, which is lacrosse after what happened,"
said Angelo Ruiz, a 7 Flames Lacrosse player.
One of the top-rated schools in the country, UVA will go head
to head with alumni - including a Native American player - focusing
on overcoming the tensions surrounding the area.
"Our essence and what we know is still simplistic to this day,
and that's why we are here to share this with you guys and let it
go," said Hall.
The game is planned for Oct. 16.