The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America


Granny's got game & former player has the story

Playing basketball was an obvious choice for Angela Gorsica Alford, who by age 10 already towered over other children — on her way to a height of 6 feet 6 inches.

But Alford didn't imagine during her years as a college hoops star that she would wind up on the sidelines making a film about other women playing the sport she loved.

Alford, a member of Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, Raleigh, N.C., produced, shot and edited Granny's Got Game. The film follows women in their 70s who have been playing competitive senior basketball as a team for almost 20 years.

Unlike Alford, who earned a scholarship at Vanderbilt University, Nashville, Tenn., and was offered a spot as a developmental player in the WNBA, these women had almost no opportunities to play beyond high school.

The documentary is part of Alford's new career, following years as a software programmer. She started making videos for wedding anniversaries and other events. Sharing personal stories soon became her passion.

"It's not as big a jump as you might think, using my engineering skills as a filmmaker," she said. "It's a lot of sitting [by] the computer and solving problems. What's new to me has been storytelling. I never even took an English class in college."

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February issue


Embracing diversity