The 2012-13 high school basketball season got underway last week, offering three of Ladysmith Secondary School (LSS)’s five teams a chance to test their metal against the competition.
The senior boys 49ers squared off against the Woodlands Secondary School Eagles Tue, Dec. 11, at LSS.
Trailing the Eagles by 11 points at halftime, the 49ers rallied to turn things around and earn themselves a 53-48 lead by the end of the third quarter.
The senior boys built on that momentum over the final quarter of play to end their season opener with a 71-59 win over the Eagles.
Kalvin Beuerlein, head coach of the senior boys’ team, said his players“were a little bit flat at the start, and needed a little emotion and excitement to get going.”
Once his team got excited, Beuerlein said, their defence improved, reducing the number of points scored by Woodlands.
“Once the emotions started building up and the guys got excited,” Beuerlein said, “we started playing even better defence and things started to roll on offence as well.”
The senior boys play their next home game Tue, Jan. 8, versus the Cedar Secondary School Spartans.
LSS’s three remaining teams played games Wed, Dec. 12.
The Grade 8 girls team faced off at LSS against the Dover Bay Dolphins Wednesday afternoon. The relatively inexperienced 49ers found themselves falling behind Dover Bay early on, trailing the Dolphins 28-6 by half time. Dover Bay dominated for the remainder of the game, leading to a 50-12 loss for the 49ers.
Coach Melinda Joyce said her team performed “pretty good for our first game, because there are a couple of girls who have never played before. Dover Bay’s a very good team. It looks like they’ve been practising a lot and their girls know their plays. Our girls didn’t do the plays that we had.”
Joyce said they’ll focus on rebounds and “hustle” in the run-up to their next game versus the Wellington Secondary School Wildcats in Nanaimo Wed, Dec. 19.
The junior boys played the Spartans at LSS Wednesday night. The 49ers fell behind early on and trailed the Spartans 34-11 at halftime.
In an attempt to narrow the gap, the 49ers let loose a barrage of three-point attempts during the third and fourth quarters but with very limited success, scoring only four points in the last quarter. They ended their first home game with a 67-23 loss.
Coach Ben Chadwick said his team played hard, but they were definitely rusty.
“Overall, they gave it a good effort,” Chadwick said, adding that a few of his players had never played basketball before.
“They’re working hard at practice and they’re definitely improving,” Chadwick added, “so by the end of the year, we should look a little better.”
The junior boys’ team plays its next game against Kwalicum Secondary School Wed, Dec. 19 at LSS.
Ladysmith’s Grade 8 boys’ team was scheduled to play the Spartans at Cedar Secondary School Wednesday afternoon, but coach Ed Mulrooney said their game was cancelled due to a scheduling conflict. The Grade 8 boys will play their first game Wednesday at Dover Bay.
The senior girls’ team took part in the Sr. Girls Basketball Welcome Back Tournament at Duncan Christian School over the weekend and won third place.
After losing their first two games to Duncan Christian School and Cowichan Secondary School, the 49ers defeated Chemainus Secondary School 51-26 in the third-place game on Saturday.
Ladysmith’s Kaylie McKinley, who had 21 points and 19 rebounds in the third-place win, was a tournament all-star. Other top scorers for LSS were Jennika Erickson with nine points and 26 rebounds, Megan Tumak with 12 points and 13 rebounds, and April Van Pelt with 10 points and four rebounds.
Head coach Dan Vincent says he noticed a “huge improvement” in his players and he was impressed with the increase in their commitment level and in the intensity of their play.
“I’m totally proud of the game they played [Saturday],” he said.
The senior girls’ next home game is Tue, Dec. 18 when the Kwalikum Kondors come to town.