Bulkley Valley Christian School (BVCS) has been hosting the Mountain Invitational Basketball Tournament for the past few years. It has also been making a habit of winning the whole shebang.
This year was no different as they knocked off rival Centennial Christian of Terrace 90-46 to go for the three-peat.
All three games the Royals played showed the hard work on basics the team has been striving for all season and the patience that the coaching staff has shown in developing strong game strategies.
Defense has been a more than slightly important aspect and the strength of the team’s approach to keeping the opposition off the scoreboard has allowed the offensive game to create large leads.
There was not just a single standout on the team that put all the points on the board. Every different combination that coach Chris Steenhof put on the floor seemed to produce a different player, or players, who would be finding the net.
“They played up to their potential for sure and did the things we asked them to do. They executed quite well especially in the last game,” he said.
The inside game was dominated by Seymon Loki. He was there for the rebounds and tip-ins but he was also smart to pass off when necessary.
The back court was controlled by Nathan Steenhof and Noah Delege. Both had good hands to steal balls and make long jumpers or short layups as the case demanded. They also knew when to pass off instead of hanging onto a ball for their own use.
Those were just a few of the players who have made the club into a team. Each player seemed to know his role and did his best to make that role go for the team.
With a berth in the provincial championships the main goal at this point, BVCS was able to easily turn aside all but one of the rivals for the zone representative.
“Right now we are ranked fourth in the province but there is a good team from Haida Gwaii that we haven’t seen that might be a challenge,” he said.
They tried to attend the Mountain Invitational but the ferry was cancelled.
There were times when the scores in the BVCS games became very lopsided. Instead of using this as a chance for his team to run up the score to an embarrassing level, Steenhof would put out his less experienced players. In some cases, it was hard to tell that they were not the first line. They continued to play the disciplined, energetic game that had led to the scoring in the first place.
One special player for the team was named the MVP and there was an uproar of agreement when he was named. Noah Stolte scored no points and in fact played no minutes in any game this season. Stolte had a bone marrow transplant in September due to a relapse of his leukemia.
The Mountain Invitational featured seven teams from within the zone that will be at the zone championship. They were mostly schools from small communities like Smithers with athletes who all play a number of different sports.