The Alaska Association of Basketball Coaches (AABC) announced its post-season awards this week, honoring three Haines Seniors and inviting them to attend this year’s Senior All-Star Event.

Grace Godinez Long was named to the All-State second team for 2A players, while Alison Benda and Eric Brouilette were named to the third team.

“It’s a big deal,” Coach Don Nash said from his fishing boat in Sitka when he learned that his colleagues had voted to recognize the three athletes who played vital roles on the Glacier Bear squads over the last four years.

While the All-State selections are simply honorary, the Senior All-Star Event is held annually as an opportunity for seniors from around the state to garner the attention of college coaching staff, many of whom will attend the All-Star events on April 14 and 15. Ten players from each of Alaska’s four divisions are selected. According to AABC Vice President Jason Boerger, “The teams will not be announced until the night before the All-Star game… 1A and 2A boys and girls will play in evenly divided groups.” Each team will be coached by either the 1A or 2A coach of the year. There is another game for the 3A and 4A players.

As well as the game itself, players will have the opportunity to demonstrate their skills in a three-point contest, a free-throw contest, a slam dunk contest, and the Alaska Exposure College Showcase where players work out with college coaches in attendance.

Godinez Long and Brouilette will be competing in the event, while Benda has opted to allow her space to be filled by an alternate. “When I first learned that I had been awarded this I felt very honored. I would’ve loved to go and play with these great athletes but unfortunately Music Fest is at the same time so I won’t be attending.”

Godinez Long jumped at the opportunity, “I immediately thought about how grateful I am to get to play one more time.”

Glacier Bears girls assistant coach Dewitt said, “I’m super proud of those gals. They are very deserving and two of the hardest working kids I’ve ever coached. They have great attitudes and definitely lead by example.”

Brouilette plans to attend Music Fest and then hop on a plane from Ketchikan to Anchorage to play in the All-Star game. His coach, James Hart, pointed out, “Eric fills his time, he’s multi-talented.”

Brouilette plans to make the most of the opportunity, “I’ll be putting in work in the weeks before these games so I know I’m prepared. I’m very excited to have one final game in my high school career.”

Coach Nash reflected on Brouilette as a player, “Eric is so self-motivated. He is totally unafraid.” He pointed out that Brouilette averaged 26 points per game over the Glacier Bears’ thirty-game season.

Coach Hart noticed a change in Brouillette this season, “He was a player before. He became a leader this season.”

Last year Sadie Anderson represented Haines in the Senior All-Star game. “The atmosphere is a little nerve-wracking,” she said, “but once everyone warms up it is a lot of fun! It is a really special experience, taking a step back and looking at the fact that you get to play with people that have been your competitors for years.”

The 1A/2A girls’ game is at 5:30 p.m. on Saturday, April 15 at Grace Christian School in Anchorage. It will be followed by the 1A/2A boys’ game. Fans can watch the games online at or on Grace Christian’s FaceBook livestream.