Long before the whole world knew Sarah Palin as "Momma Grizzly," the handful of girls on her high school basketball team called their starting point guard Sarah "Barracuda" for the tenacious defense she played. Hers was the kind of determination that fit in well on a scrappy team from a small town where people were proud to call themselves Valley Trash and happy to take on the big-city schools to prove which team was really the best.
As beautiful as Alaska is, it's also unforgiving. It's a place where your first mistake may be your last. When the winter comes and the nights are long and the temperatures plunge, everyone starts looking for an escape. All across Alaska, those gyms—bright and warm—become a sanctuary not only for the players but for their isolated hometowns as well.
With Sarah Palin and the Wasilla Warriors, acclaimed sportswriter Mike Shropshire goes beyond Sarah Palin's media profile to tell the incredible untold story of how she and a team of young women came together to overcome daunting odds as they battled their way to the Alaska state championship.