Athletics Review: Dec 6, 2010

Senior Girls Basketball
The Senior girls basketball team opened play this week in an exhibition series. The team faced Belmont on Friday afternoon, winning 76-17. The Blue Jags were led by Madison “McGoo” Hadfield (19 pts), Abbey “Zeke” Piazza (17 pts) and Cliona “Qube” Quail-Bradley (13 pts). Allie “Legs” White chipped in with 10 rebounds. Their second game was not much different, as they defeated Brentwood 94-32. Qube finished with 18 pts and 9 steals, Zeke chipped in 14 pts and Rachel Sibbald added 12 pts.

On Saturday, the Blue Jags faced the #4-ranked Nechako Valley Viqueens. Boasting a big, physical lineup, the Viqueens would prove to be too much for the Jags to handle. Down by just 5 points after the third quarter, SMUS stuggled offensively, only netting 4 points in the 4th to finish the game on the losing end 34-46. In spite of the loss, SMUS did compete for three quarters and proved that they are competitive with one of the top teams in the province. Qube led all SMUS scorers with 10 points and Annie “Matrix” Pike chipped in with 7 points.

The team has a big weekend coming up, as they travel to St. Thomas More Collegiate (#5-ranked) for a weekend tournament featuring four top-12 teams.

Grade 9 Girls Basketball
The Grade 9 girls basketball team were in Richmond this past weekend for their first competition of the season at the Hugh Boyd Tournament. It was a tough draw, with the first game against an athletic and strong Handsworth team. SMUS tried their hardest, but couldn’t keep up with the pace of Handsworth. The second game was much more evenly matched against Centennial, and the Jags came out much more agressive. Stephanie Wong-Harrison led the team with 17 points, and Tammy Tan chipped in with 8 points, and Chris Chen had 3 of her 7 points with a great shot from behind the arc. It was a tight contest for much of the game, but in the end, Centennial pulled away to win 56-42. The final game of the weekend was against Rockridge. Tammy Tan hit an impressive 5 of 6 from the free throw line, and it was the best defensive performance by the team thus far, but unfortunately, it was not enough to win.

Grade 8 Boys Basketball
The Grade 8 boys basketball team completed a very successful week, winning all six games in comfortable fashion.

A combination of solid defence, improved rebounding and balanced scoring saw the team defeat Royal Oak 51-31 in exhibition play before then, behind some especially good play from Mike Edwards and Steve Piazza, going on to beat Spencer in the City quarterfinals.

On December 3-4, the team made the trek to Chilliwack for the Slesse-Vedder Invitational tournament, and, with Jason Scully, Jack Sherrod, Matty McColl and Max Pollen leading the way, opened with large wins over Sahali of Kamloops and Pemberton.

In the semifinals, with Grant Nicholson, David Lee, Alex Caton and Jake Wilmott providing a real boost off the bench, the team overcame a sluggish start and a host of missed free throws to finally subdue MEI 42-23. This win advanced SMUS to the tournament final against highly regarded Brookswood, from Langley.

Any preconceived ideas that this would be a nailbiter of a championship match were quickly dispelled, as a red hot opening six minutes, fueled by Scully, Owen Sudul and tournament All-Star Graeme Hyde-Lay, allowed SMUS to grab a 19-2 lead. Stifling defence and a smart transition game were the order of the day throughout in what was a comprehensive 55-16 final scoreline.

The team now returns to City playoff action, with coaches Cyril Indome and Greg Wallis prepping the boys first for a semifinal matchup with Cedar Hill.

Junior Boys Basketball
The Junior boys basketball team, ranked #4 in the opening BC poll, opened preseason in good form, registering comfortable wins over Belmont and Claremont.

Still saddled with injuries, the team dressed only eight players for both games, with starters Mark Yorath, Dawit Hailemariam, Keiler Totz, Wayne Lin and Monty Fraser-Brown all logging a lot of minutes. Guards Dave Pollen (ankle), Trenton Sculz Franco (hip) and Steve Whillans (flu) provided bench support despite all being less than fully fit.

December 6-12 will be a real measuring stick for the team, as exhibitions against Oak Bay and Brentwood set the table for a much anticipated December 11 matchup against defending provincial champion and current BC #1 Vancouver College.

Junior Girls Basketball
The Junior girls basketball team travelled to Vancouver this weekend to play in the York House Season Tip-Off Tournament. The girls had a challenging first game against one of the top ranked junior girls teams in the province, Brookswood, and with a second game win by default the girls were ready for some serious competition in their final game on Saturday against St Thomas Aquinas. The game was tied after the first quarter, but the bigger STA team beat out our Jags in the end. Orla Glen and Kate Cluley were awarded with players of the game, and Jocelyne Yan was the leading scorer with six points. The girls play their first league game against Reynolds on Monday.

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