During at two Edmonton high schools.The Edmonton Commercial

During the era known as the Thirties during the Great Depression, The Edmonton Grads were a significant contributor to inspiring the lives of millions in North America in many ways.  They should be remembered by future generations due to their great success, ability to achieve success despite major setbacks, amazing attitudes, and finally their dedication to play women’s basketball which led them to be incredible role models for kids and women everywhere. The coach of The Grad’s is John Percy Page. He was born on May 14, 1887 and died on March 2, 1973. He was a Canadian teacher, basketball coach, provincial politician, and the eighth Lieutenant Governor of Alberta. Born in Rochester, New York, the son of Absalom Bell Page and Elizabeth Thomas, he moved with his family in 1890 to Bronte, Ontario. He attended Oakville Junior High School, Hamilton Collegiate Institute, Ontario Normal School, and Queen’s University. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Queen’s University, and a Bachelor of Commercial Science degree from the American Institute of Business. In 1906, he accepted a teaching position at Rothesay Collegiate in Rothesay, New Brunswick. In 1907, he switched to the St. Thomas Collegiate Institute where he taught until 1912. In 1910 J. Percy Page married Maude Roche, daughter of Gilbert Roche, of St. Thomas, Ontario. They had one daughter: Patricia Hollingsworth. In 1912 Percy took a position in Edmonton, Alberta to introduce commercial training into the Edmonton high school system. Before retiring from teaching in 1952, he would be a Principal at two Edmonton high schools.The Edmonton Commercial Graduates Basketball Club, referred to simply as the Grads, were a women’s basketball team founded and coached by John Percy Page for the period from 1915 to 1940. They started as a high-school team and was later to become one of the best sport teams in history whose winning record remains unparalleled by any team in any sport. They were not only known for their great success, but also for their leadership, dedication, sportsmanship and determination. During the Grads career they has a total of 502 wins and only 20 losses. The roster on the first champion game includes: Dorothy and Daisy Johnson, Noel Robertson, Winnie Martin, Eleanor Mountifield, Nellie Perry, Connie Smith, and J. Percy Page, who was the head coach. They are the most successful sports team in Canadian history. A lot of young girls to this day still look up to them and want to be as good as they were. They changed and improved women’s sports because of there great success. They won their first Canadian title in 1923 against a team from London, Ontario. That same year, they participated in their first international competition against the Favorite-Knits with a two-game combined score of 53-33, to capture the Underwood Trophy. For 17 years, from 1923 to 1940, the Grads won the trophy. On their 25th anniversary, the team was presented with the trophy as a permanent possession. In addition to their North American successes, the Grads represented Canada at four consecutive Olympic games from 1924 to 1936. They won all 27 of their Olympic matches, but because women’s basketball was not yet an official event, there were no medals awarded.The Edmonton Grads are best known for their crazy 96.1% win percentage and their amazing attitudes on and off the court. They were taught by John J. Percy to behave like ladies at all times, even on the court. They are known for their huge change for womens sports because people brought them down all the time saying that “women don’t play sports” and that it is “unlady-like”. They did not let this affect them and they accomplished something so outstanding for Canadian history. John Percy Page was known for his loyalty for staying with the Grads for 25 years and his dedication to the team. He was also known for his respect for women and his unique and successful coaching style. Dr. James Naismith was a Canadian physical education instructor who invented the game of basketball in 1891 while working at the YMCA Training School in Springfield, Massachusetts. The Grads formed in 1915, twenty four years after it was invented. Sports were meant for men to play back then, so it was crazy to see how soon women started to play. Quickly after they started the club, they became unstoppable and set incredible records. This drew attention to the sport and how women can be just as good as men. This was an important factor to not just Canadian history, but to all women. The Grad’s were just the beginning of women sports. Now all women can compete in the olympics, go to university for sports, have their own leagues, and be supported. The grads were a huge impact to this and still played when nobody supported them. The Edmonton Grads were one of the first women’s basketball teams. The team also started during World War 1 and went through World War 2. In the 1920’s and 1930’s there was not many women playing sports. Nobody would be interested in watching women playing sports because people thought of them less than men. Once people started to realize that the Grad’s were as good, or better than men, everyone became interested and they were popular. Sadly 1940 was their last year. There were several reasons for this,  including the loss of their arena, which had been taken over by the government for the Air Force Commonwealth Training Program. Wartime conditions made travel difficult and led to the cancellation of many competitions in Canada, the United States and in Europe. Since the Grads were so good, there were few teams good enough to compete with the Grads. Finally, attendance at games had gradually declined. In conclusion, the Grad’s had a huge impact in the 1930’s and inspired millions of people around the world. Through their perseverance, great success, ability to achieve success despite major setbacks, amazing attitudes, and finally their dedication, they accomplished something huge, that nobody has done since them.