BYU Basketball Player’s Family Flies All The Way From New Zealand For Epic Surprise

Close up of BYU basketball player Kaylee Smiler smiling as she hugs her dad on the court.

Since joining Bingham Young University’s (BYU) women’s basketball team, Kaylee Smiler has accomplished so much. That’s why she, and other seniors on the team, were honored at a recent game which saw them play against Houston. Earning a 64-54 win was a nice way to celebrate the end of an era, but the real joy for Kaylee came in the form of unexpected guests.

Kaylee is native to New Zealand. Still, that didn’t stop a number of her family members from traveling all the way across the world to support her in person. Best of all, this basketball star has no idea until they show up! To top it off, they surprise her by performing a Haka dance.

@cbssportscbb So sweet 💙 #collegebasketball #cbb #newzealand #kayleesmiler #family #haka #byu ♬ original sound – CBS Sports College Basketball

This ceremonial dance originated in New Zealand. Although it started off as a war dance, it has transformed over the years. Now, it often symbolizes community and strength. You’ll often see it performed at sporting events, weddings, and funerals. It’s no wonder, then, why Kaylee gets so emotional when this special performance is done just for her!

BYU Basketball Player Kaylee Smiler Cries Tears of Joy Over Family’s Surprise

“Family is everything,” the BYU women’s basketball team writes. “Kaylee Smiler gets the best senior day surprise one could ask for. Her parents flew from New Zealand to surprise her and perform the Haka. It doesn’t get better than this.”

People from all around the world are sharing that they, too, got emotional when watching Kaylee’s family perform the Haka.

“I’m so impressed with the crowd and other players,” one person writes. “The respect they showed in allowing this to happen without causing a diversion. That’s everything.”

“I can’t think of anything as culturally powerful as the haka that makes everyone — even those with no connection or clue what going on — feel pure awe,” another person shares.

You can find the source of this story’s featured image here!

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