“Pistol Shrimps”: Women and Basketball Are a Lethal Weapon

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Photo: Pistol Shrimps’ documentary cast and crew Photo Credit: Charlé Moore

Pistol Shrimp is considered the most aggressive animal in the sea. It is also the selected name of a 13 women basketball team in a freshly formed recreational league. Just like these vicious sea creatures, these players are fierce with a seriously funny way of competing on basketball courts. Still be aware, because these women are packing some heat as they continue warming up on basketball courts and playgrounds in Southern California area.

“I think there are so many documentaries that tackle aggressive subjects. I think powerful women and feminism is overlooked by the fact that we look at online comments all the time. If you just turn to your right and see that girls are making it happen. You just have to document it. You have to show it. They are doing it every day, and they started this league. I think it [Pistol Shrimps] is a powerful women’s story.”

Pistol Shrimps’ Director Brent Hodge told LAEntNews

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Photo: Pistol Shrimps’ Director, Brent Hodge Photo Credit: Charlé Moore

“Recreational sports are a big deal. Not everybody has to be a professional sports player. You can have fun and be a role model in your league. This [league] creates community among women, and that is important.” (Hodge)

Hodge and Pistol Shrimps want to highlight women empowerment through sports.

Paisley Grey, a Model and Pistol Shrimp Player, shared with LAEntNews about her journey into recreational sports.

“I had never played basketball before, but when I went to the first practice, I felt relieved that the other girls had not played too.”

Grey added, “I grew up in a household which sports were not emphasized at all. I didn’t realize what being a part of a team meant but coming together with these women showed me the benefit of having a support system.”

Something common among most of the players on the team was that they had little experience to none playing basketball.

“It is important for girls to see other girls playing basketball. I didn’t see a lot of girls playing when I was a little girl. This [recreational league] is just half the battle, and having that presence on the court,” (Grey).

Even with the WNBA celebrating its league recently 20th year anniversary and women’s college sports being broadcasted on national cable networks such as ESPN even longer. Still some might think it’s absurd that some girls and females have been not exposed to other women playing basketball or sports in general.

“WNBA are such professionals. When you look at WNBA, you think they are so far above me that I can never do that [play basketball]. But when you see girls of your skill level, you want to join in the sport,” (Grey).

Parks and Recreation actress, Aubrey Plaza, agrees with Grey in spite of her recent announcement to depart Pistol Shrimp team for her sister’s team on ESPN’s flagship show, SportsCenter.

“I want to inspire young girls, old women, really all girls and women to get out there and play some basketball. It is a male-dominated sport, but I think it is cool for women to have a similar outlet.”

Sports are healthy outlets. For few women and many men, sports have been their secret weapon to their success.

“I am a big fan of team sports. I played a lot of them in school. I heard 95% of female CEOs in the corporate world played team sports. Even for myself, I have learned to love myself.” Molly Hawkey, one of the few Pistol Shrimps with sports experience and the comedian of the team, told LAEntNews.

 

 

Author: Charlé Moore

Charlé K. Moore is a graduate of Christian Brothers University in Memphis, Tennessee, where she received her Engineering (ECE) degree and a minor in Mathematics. She is finishing her master’s in Sports Management at Georgetown University and continuing a specialized journalism master’s program at USC’s Annenberg School.

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