Morning Star Staff
All aspects of their game were working as the Fulton Maroons went into Saturday afternoon’s final of the 16th annual Corporate Classic against the Duchess Park Condors of Prince George.
Dale Olson’s crew went 3-0 in preliminary play, finishing off the LV Rogers Bombers of Nelson 72-49 Friday night. Fulton upended the College Heights Cougars of Prince George 57-36 earlier Friday in front of a packed gym.
The Maroons opened the eight-team affair by grounding the Sa-Hali Sabres of Kamloops 65-34 Thursday afternoon.
“This is our best tourney of the year so far,” said Olson. “For a young team, they are playing with some new-found confidence. Noah Alleyne is our floor general and best player; he is playing extremely hard and well, controlling the pace of the game. Our other starters are doing a great job. Hunter Krieger is playing very big inside and rebounding well at 14 points and eight rebounds a game.”
Fulton parlayed 17 points from Nathan Banga and 16 from Alleyne to bounce the Bombers, who got 16 points from Vinnie Johnston. Ike Olson, with 11 points, and Krieger, with 10, helped the Maroons. Banga nailed five treys.
Krieger drained 16 points, while Kobe Romanovitch canned 15 and Banga rang up 10 as Fulton rolled over College Heights. Ben Shand scored 10 points for the Cougars.
In Thursday’s opener, Banga hit five shots from the Landing Plaza as the Maroons shut down Sa-Hali. Romanovitch added 10 and Alleyne eight. Dima Pokhylov fired 13 points for the Sabres.
Olson went into the final averaging eight points and nine rebounds a game while playing dynamic defence. Caden Doyle was hitting eight points and nine boards a game while showing awesome hustle.
“Banga is scoring at an amazing pace and has really turned the corner as a shooter. Off the bench, we have Kobe (The Microwave) Romanovitch, who can come in and heat it up instantly, scoring big time. As well, we have Bryn Bedard doing a solid job off the bench, coming in and rebounding well and shooting some much needed, well-timed three- pointers.”
The VSS Panthers, coached by Glen Garvie, played in the consolation final Saturday afternoon against Sa-Hali.
The Panthers went 1-2 in their pool, advancing to the B final with a 92-79 win over the South Okanagan Hornets of Oliver Friday night.
Ben Hladik turned in a monster outing for the Cats, pocketing 43 points. Hladik went 11-for-15 from the charity line and sank a pair of treys. Seth Blundell chipped in with 21 points, flushing five attempts from Lakeview Park.
Leon Schenker added 11 points for VSS, while Jacob Marshall collected 10.
Gurshan Dhaliwal rang up 22 points, while Manvir Brar bagged 19 for the Hornets. Dhaliwal dialed long-distance four times.
Earlier Friday, the Panthers fell 86-48 to Duchess Park with Hladik counting 20 points and Blundell scoring 14.
Duchess Park ran up early leads of 23-3 and 34-5 before going to their bench. Colburn Pearce, with 17 points, and Owen Trepanier, with 13, led the Condors, who got points from 11 players.
VSS opened the Classic by losing 64-57 to the Westsyde Whundas of Kamloops Thursday night.
Reade Bentz contributed 23 points and Josh Bosher produced 15 for Westsyde. Schenker sank four treys in the fourth quarter and finished with 16 for VSS. Hladik hit 15 and Blundell 10.
Duchess Park, coached by John MacDonald, brushed back South Okanagan 87-78 in their first game Thursday night.
Jasper Yutuc provided 19 points, while Pearce chipped in with 14 for the Condors. Majot Dhaliwal and Gurshan Dhaliwal each earned 22 points for the Hornets, while Kulbir Grewal added 16.
The Condors thrashed Westsyde 71-43 in other Friday action behind 18 points from Yutic and 11 from Pearce.
Scott Lemphers, Bentz and Bosher each sank eight points for Westsyde.
In other Friday action, the Sabres iced the Bombers 69-54, South Okanagan defeated Westsyde 66-62 and Sa-Hali clipped College Heights 64-61.
LV Rogers met South Okanagan for seventh and eighth placings, while College Heights squared off with Westysde for fifth and sixth placings Saturday morning.
Tim Hortons, Buy-Low Foods, Westwood Electric and DCT Chambers are major sponsors.