X-Falcons continue reign at Dolphin Classic

MVP Josh Whyte paced the X-Falcons to a solid 54-43 victory over University of Fraser Valley in the men
MVP Josh Whyte paced the X-Falcons to a solid 54-43 victory over University of Fraser Valley in the men's final of the 29th annual Dolphin Basketball Classic Sunday at Richmond's Thompson Community Centre.
— image credit: Don Fennell photo

As the sun set on the 29th annual Dolphin Basketball Classic Sunday evening, a general consensus among the crowd was that—like a good wine—the tournament keeps getting better with age.

So, too, apparently do the X-Falcons.

For the second year in a row, and fourth time in the last five years, the X-Falcons netted the men's title at the popular Richmond four-on-four playground hoops event at Thompson Community Centre.

"It was tough sledding. We were only 2-2 after the round-robin, but we hung in there," said Navi Sekhon, the architect of the 2014 edition of the X-Falcons.

Like their coach, the X-Falcons—who outscored a talented, but young University of Fraser Valley team 54-43 in the final—demonstrated all the qualities of winners. And that was the key to victory.

Sekhon purposely assembled a lineup that, in addition to featuring several "older" players, featured individuals who have consistently proven to be winners and know what it takes to rise to the top.

Their MVP was Josh Whyte, the former University of B.C. star guard who, noted Sekhon, seemed to score a basket every time his team needed one. He was equally effective on the defensive side of the ball.

The X-Falcons tipped off tournament play with a 71-54 win over Blacktop Rainmen Friday  and then topped Wolfpack 59-39 Saturday morning before dropping two in a row—55-50 to the Steve Lee-led Runnin Rebels Saturday night and 68-61 to the University of Fraser Valley Sunday morning.

•Widely regarded as perhaps the best dunker in the world, Kevin Kemp won the slam dunk contest.

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