Athletics Review: Dec 7, 2009

Senior Girls Volleyball
This week, the SMUS team hosted the Senior Girls AA Volleyball Provincial Championships. Throughout the round robin play and the playoffs, SMUS competed against some of the top teams throughout the province. Unfortunately, the youth and inexperience of the SMUS team resulted in them being out-competed throughout the tournament, but the girls did improve a tremendous amount and played some of their best volleyball of the season. The girls were also named the Most Sportsmanlike team of the tournament, an honour that was chosen by the officials of the tournament. All of the girls played fantastic and they all seemed to have a great time both playing and watching the high caliber volleyball. Everyone is thankful to the SMUS community for all of their hard work in making the tournament such a success!

Junior Boys Basketball
Following tryouts, 30 players were selected to three Junior Boys teams, with the Jags, Blues and Whites now set for challenging league and exhibition schedules.

The Jags, made up primarily of Grade 10 players, sport a 4-1 exhibition record to date, with wins over Dover Bay, Cowichan, Windsor and Lambrick Park balanced against a narrow three-point loss to Handsworth. As was the case last year, the trio of Joe Erlic, Liam Maclure and Derek Hyde-Lay have shouldered most of the scoring load, while two Grade 9 players, Mark Yorath and Dawit Workie, have impressed with both their ball handling and defensive play.

A busy schedule prior to the Christmas break includes an away exhibition to Oak Bay, the Oak Bay Christmas Tournament and a much anticipated December 18 encounter with Fraser Valley powerhouse MEI.

The Blues, made up entirely of Grade 9 players, opened their season with a 43-40 victory over Windsor, behind strong play from post Steve Whillams and forward Colton Stockus. Then, in a local Christmas Invitational tournament, the team, with newcomer Wayne Lin displaying some neat touches, split games against GP Vanier and Belmont.

League play starts December 9 with a home opener vs Esquimalt.

The Whites have yet to see action, but open their campaign December 10 at Stelly’s. Both the Jags and Blues will play through local and Island competition with an eye to qualifying for their respective BC Tournaments, which will be held March 4-6, 2010.

Senior Badminton
Tryouts were, once again, very competitive this year with only a few spots open for the taking. After the team was picked, the first practice finally took place over the weekend. Practice was intense, and the focus was on fitness and determination. The potential is big for this year’s team, and nothing short of a solid provincial run will achieve the initial expectations.

Exhibition games take place this week for the badminton team with a home game on Tuesday vs. Reynolds and an away game on Thursday vs. PCS.

Junior Girls Basketball
The Grade 10 girls basketball team kicked off pre-season competition this past weekend at the Victoria Tip-off Tournament. With each quarter of basketball, the girls gained experience, and started to come together on defense. Alice Wang shone in the first game against a tough Claremont team in their home gym after hitting a 3-pointer. On Saturday, the team was down in numbers, but not in spirit. A tough match against Sutherland dealt SMUS their second loss of the tournament. In their final game, SMUS faced Woodlands. Ronnie Tsai led the team in scoring, Laura Shaw provided great defense, and Claudia O’Neill had four blocked shots. After practices this coming week, the girls will travel to Simon Fraser University for their next tournament.

Senior Boys Basketball
The Senior boys basketball team kicked off their season with a very competitive tournament in Cowichan this weekend, which featured the top basketball talent on the Island. The boys played in four fast paced games in the span of three days.

In the opening game, SMUS squared off against perennial powerhouse Dover Bay. While the boys had some fight in them, their first-game jitters made for some poor perimeter shooting, and the boys dropped this one by 9 points.

In the first consolation match, the boys played cross-town rival Mt. Doug, who boasted a quick backcourt tandem which the Blue Jags had to slow down to be successful. Right from the tip the boys controlled this one, and eventually rolled to a 10-point victory. Jamie Yorath was named player of the game.

The third game SMUS played was against the always competitive Shawnigan Lake team, who had a huge size advantage. The SMUS boys guarded brilliantly, and in a defensive match up, they pulled out a big 9-point victory. Some huge shots by Tycho-Mommsen Smith sealed the deal in the fourth quarter.

In their final game, SMUS played Oak Bay, featuring some top-level talent at point guard. The boys knew they would have to earn this victory. Late in the third quarter, the boys found themselves up by 10, but were unable to hold onto the lead, and some lucky shooting from Oak Bay allowed their opponents to claw back to win the game by 6 points. Jure Erlic had his best game of the tournament registering 28 points.

Overall, a very good start to the season for the boys.

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