Melika Samia and Jyordanna Davey have been named as 2021 recipients of Tania Dalton Foundation Scholarships.
The Tania Dalton Foundation (TDF), created in honour of the sporting legend, last week named the fourth-year intake of deserving recipients for its Scholarship Programme.
The Foundation exists to inspire young people to be the best they can be through sport, by coordinating a range of programmes aimed at making a positive and measurable impact.
The main initiative for the Foundation, launched four years ago, is the Scholarship Programme which honours Tania’s passion for supporting young women in sport.
Since the inception, Basketball New Zealand’s High-Performance team has worked with the Foundation by nominating players who are eligible. This is done through a committee appointed by BBNZ, which is currently Mel Downer, Jody Cameron and Shay Haira.
Founder, Duane Dalton, says the programme supports talented young sportswomen from all kinds of circumstances, or those who will benefit from the unique and valuable support the Foundation can provide.
“We’re in our fourth year now, with the 2018 scholarship recipients becoming alumni. I am proud, as would Tania, of the impact these girls are having in their respective sport and community,” says Duane.
Melika and Jyordanna Davey become the seventh and eighth basketballers to receive support from the Tania Dalton Foundation Scholarship Programme, which in 2021 has nominated a total of thirteen young female athletes to receive support for the three-year duration of the scholarship.
Basketball New Zealand’s Head of High Performance Leonard King is proud that Basketball has had a strong association with the cause.
“We see the Tania Dalton Foundation as an inspiring ally for young women who aspire to represent New Zealand in their chosen sport and who seek to have a positive impact on their community.
“Not only does the Foundation make financial contributions to help fund the girls to play sport, they also make significant investments in the holistic development of each athlete and provides them mentorship opportunities – in some cases these last beyond the three year programme.
“Basketball New Zealand values our partnership with the Foundation and we are incredibly supportive of the work they do with junior female athletes.”
Despite the Covid pandemic curtailing a lot of basketball both Melika and Jyordanna enjoyed an extremely successful 2021. Both players are looking to pursue American collegiate careers once they have finished high school.
Melika Samia –Tauranga City Basketball Association
Formerly from Hawkes Bay, Melika is a Year 13 student at Mount Maunganui College.
In 2020 she was named to the Junior Tall Ferns team and the New Zealand Under 17 team.
She was elected to the Tournament Team at the Aon U17 Nationals playing for Tauranga.
Her Mount Maunganui College team finished runners-up to St Peter’s School Cambridge at the Central Invitational Tournament in Palmerston North – she was named to the Tournament Team.
Jyordanna Davey – Basketball Hutt Valley
Lower Hutt’s Jyordanna Davey is a Year 13 student at Sacred Heart College.
Having played for age group teams for many years, in 2020 she helped Hutt Valley to the runners-up spot at the Aon U17 National Championship.
Also in 2020 Jyordanna was named to the NZ U17 squad.
She also played for Capital Swish in the 2020 Sal’s NBL 18IN18.
Basketball Scholarship Class of 2018:
- Sharne Robati
The leading scorer at 2020 Sal’s NBL averaging 16.4ppg for Auckland Dream.
- Leah Mafua
A starter at Otero Community College who are competing at the 2021 Junior College National Championships this week in Texas.
Basketball Scholarship Class of 2019:
- Zaaliyah Kailahi-Fulu
Will begin a basketball scholarship at Williston State College in 2021.
- Waiata Jennings
Named to the 2020 Junior Tall Ferns and played for Rotorua Lady Geysers in the 2020 Sal’s NBL D League Grand Final.
- Quaye Walker-Eketone
Named to the 2020 Junior Tall Ferns squad.
Basketball Scholarship Class of 2020:
- Alana Paewai
Named to the 2020 NZ U17 team. Selected to the Tournament Team at the Aon U17 Nationals after helping Waikato claim the championship title. Played for Waikato Wizards in the 2020 Sal’s NBL 18IN18
Tania and Duane’s daughter Tayla has just completed her freshman year at St Mary’s College, California whilst sons Mattie and Charlie both play for North Harbour representative teams and Rosmini College.