Hoops playoffs starting
High school basketball is a short season, but hopefully it was long enough to have Nanaimo’s teams in playoff form.
The B.C. School Sports North Island basketball championships get underway Thursday (Feb. 17) in a few communities.
Dover Bay Secondary School is the site of the North Islands for senior AAA girls. The Dover girls play Brooks in the first round Thursday at 5 p.m., and the Nanaimo District Islanders will be in tough against the Alberni Armada at 8:30 p.m. Winning teams will advance to the semifinals on Friday night and the North Island final goes Saturday at 5:30 p.m.
Nanaimo’s senior AA teams will have to travel to their North Island tournaments.
The senior AA boys’ tourney starts Thursday at Kwalikum. All of Nanaimo’s teams are on the same side of the draw, with the Woodlands Eagles taking on Timberline at 5:45 p.m. and the Cedar Spartans facing the John Barsby Blazers at 7:30 p.m. The winners of those games meet Friday night to try to make it to the North Island final Saturday at 4 p.m.
At the senior AA girls’ North Islands at Brentwood College, the Woodlands Eagles were able to secure the No. 1 seed, so they begin with a favourable matchup Thursday against Shawnigan Lake at 2 p.m. The Wellington Wildcats face Gulf Islands at 3:45 p.m., then the Cedar Spartans take on Brentwood at 7:15 p.m.
Senior AAA boys’ North Island championships aren’t until Feb. 24-26 at Wellington Secondary School, so Nanaimo’s teams all had league games on Tuesday.
At Wellington, the Wildcats defeated the NDSS Islanders 60-35. Nate Brown had 19 points for Wellington and Jin Han and Ethan Schulz also contributed offensively. For ND, Spencer Brydon scored 19 points and Aman Parhar also supplied offence.
The Dover Bay Dolphins were in action in their home gym Tuesday, doubling up the Cowichan Thunderbirds 60-30. Jason McKee scored 22 points for Dover.
Dover also had a notable exhibition game on the weekend, dropping a 65-64 decision to Oak Bay, the Island’s No. 2-ranked team, on the road in Victoria. Eric Kuzminski led the Dolphins with 18 points and Rory Bell added 14.
Also playing on the weekend were the Cedar Spartans and NDSS Islanders senior girls, who ended up meeting in the final of the Queen Margaret School tournament in Duncan. The Spartans soundly defeated ND in the final, 63-32.
COURT SHORTS … Another high school basketball tournament this weekend is the Grade 9 boys’ Island championship at Wellington Secondary School. The host ’Cats are the only local team participating. They start with a game Friday (Feb. 18) at 11 a.m. against Southgate and the championship game is Saturday at 4:45 p.m.