The Nakusp Secondary School girls’ team won both of their games in the tournament on Saturday which sends them straight through to provincials where they will be vying for the coveted title of number one in B.C. The girls won their first game of the day against Boundary Central Secondary School (BCSS) with a score of 39 to 28, placing them in the Championship game against Fernie later that day. They handily won that game with a score of 60-43.
Coach Jay Gardner sat down with the Arrow Lakes News between games.
“It’s never easy to play at home with the pressure of the playoffs, with the parents in the gym,” he said, referring to the full bleachers on the sidelines, “They worked hard–they are a great team, a very cohesive group. They work together and have great comradery on the basketball court and off.”
The coach said that the aggressive defense kept the girls in the game and allowed them to come out ahead, making the run that they needed to do to finish the BCSS team off. He added that Grade ten player Renee Goodman was key in the success of their first game of the day, “She keeps us very even keeled, very steady. We’re lucky to have her.”
Gardner had a lot of praise for his team and their families for a successful season so far. They just came back from a tournament in Castlegar where they played against Castlegar, Trail and Nelson. He had suffered a personal loss and could not attend with them but they went anyway with some of the parents and made him proud.
“I coach because of my athletes. I really enjoy working with them and watching them develop their love for the game. Their competitive spirit. Sports don’t lie- you are who you are. The nice thing about that is that you can try to get better. That’s what we do. We try to get better day by day.”
Zone games were happening all over the province of hopefuls vying to become one of the 16 teams to qualify for the provincial championship games being held this year in Lumby from March 4-7. The NSS Cougars boys’ team heads to Fernie Friday for their chance at zone playoffs.