Athletics Review: January 23, 2012

Senior Girls Basketball
by Lindsay Brooke

The Senior girls basketball team had a quiet week. The snow day cancelled their only scheduled game. Instead, the team had a week of some much needed practice. Their next games are this weekend at the Belmont Invitational.

Grade 9 Boys Basketball
by Steve Bates

The Grade 9 boys had a very successful week. Despite being down 11 points with four minutes to go versus Vic High, the boys scored 12 unanswered points, culminating with a buzzer beater put back by Michael Cernucan to win 46-45.

On the weekend, the boys welcomed Mt. Prevost to our gym with an energetic, run-and-gun offense spurred by tenacious defense en route to a 44-34 win.

Senior Boys Basketball
by Ian Hyde-Lay

The Senior boys ‒ anticipating a spot in the prestigious Vancouver College Emerald Tournament January 19-21 only to be dropped late due to a scheduling mix-up ‒ managed a league makeup game against PCS and a home exhibition against Cowichan instead.

In the first of these two encounters, David Lafleur (21 points) led a balanced attack to help account for PCS.

The next afternoon was a much less pleasant experience, as a rough start saw SMUS trailing the Duncan visitors 22-4 early in the second quarter. Miss after miss ‒ from in close and from behind the arc ‒ ensured a difficult climb back against a nuggety opposition.

In the end, with Joe Erlic (20 points) and Dawit Workie (12 points) spearheading the comeback, the team, on the back of solid defence and a few successful shots, scrambled from behind to tie the score at 47 points. Then, in a somewhat fitting conclusion, a botched fast break and subsequent travelling violation with 8 seconds to play gave the ball back to Cowichan. Mitch Knippleberg, courtesy of a tough, contested ten-foot jumper, then gave the Thunderbirds a two-point lead, with SMUS’ final attempt to equalize coming to naught.

The loss will hopefully be a firm reminder of the effort and concentration required in every game as the season moves to its conclusion.

SMUS will need to back up its BC AA #5 ranking with a vastly improved performance at the January 27–28 Shawnigan-Brentwood “Countdown to the Playoffs” Tournament.

Step into the Senior boys practice last Tuesday and listen to Reagan Daly, Derek Hyde-Lay and Joe Erlic talk about this weekend’s tournament.

Junior Boys Basketball
by Ritch Primrose

The Junior boys basketball team travelled in near blizzard conditions to the Saanich Peninsula on Monday to play the Stelly’s Stingers. Having not played Stelly’s yet this season, the team was eager to see what they had to offer, and started the game with a level of energy the Stingers could not match.

Jason Scully came out of the gates hard with five quick points in the first quarter, penetrating to the hoop at will. The Blue Jags’ tough 2-2-1 press generated many turn-overs and kept the home team on their heels. A balanced scoring attack — with seven different SMUS players on the scoresheet — led to a 37–15 halftime lead.

The second half saw much of the same, with Max Pollen putting up eight points in the third quarter, and Abe Kharghani looking dominant in the post, finishing with eight points and as many rebounds.

By the time the fourth quarter came to a conclusion, every player on the Blue Jags’ bench had seen considerable minutes, with Jeremy Chan and Graeme Hyde-Lay sharing the point guard duties, while David Boroto used his athleticism to help contain Stelly’s down the stretch. Matt Rud led all scorers with thirteen points, and the final score was 66–32 for the Jags. Graeme Hyde-Lay led the team in the assists category.

This week the boys take a break from league action, but will be competing in a tough field at Claremont’s Spartan Invitational this weekend. They open against Dover Bay at 6:00 pm on Friday.

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