The senior girls basketball team from King’s Christian School in Salmon Arm recently traveled to Nanaimo, B.C. to compete in the Single A Basketball Provincials.
After a strong regular season, King’s was the second seed out of the Okanagan and the fourth overall seed going into the tournament.
Action opened Wednesday, March 1, against the 13 seed Jules Verne out of Vancouver. It was a strong opening game for King’s with a final score of 67-7. Moriah Jansen posted a quadruple double and was named Player of the Game.
Thursday’s quarterfinal game matched up King’s with Northside Christian from Vanderhoof. King’s only loss at last year’s provincial tournament came at the hands of Northside in the opening round. This year, King’s Christian came out on top in a tough contest.
With a final score of 49-45, King’s advanced to the semifinals. Sarah Sutherland and Kadence Klassen led the scoring, and Klassen was named Player of the Game.
The semifinal on Friday pitted King’s against the number 1 overall seed, Unity Christian. Unity had been ranked first in the province for most of the season. King’s were outsized and fell behind quickly in the first half, but rallied to compete evenly in the second half. Shiloh Jansen was Player of the Game for King’s. A loss of 67-41 meant that King’s Christian would be battling for 3rd or 4th place on Saturday.
The bronze medal match had King’s facing their strongest competition in the Okanagan Valley, Kelowna Christian, who was the third seed in the provincial tournament. The teams had faced each other twice this season, with the results being split. King’s beat Kelowna by six in December, but Kelowna managed to defeat King’s Christian by six in the Valley final. Saturday’s game was a battle of two tremendous defensive efforts. Kelowna Christian keyed in on slowing down Moriah Jansen, while King’s also focused on Kelowna’s top scorer Ashley Michiel. In the end, King’s Christian prevailed and won the game 26-24. Payton Kerr was one of the keys of the intense and effective defense, and was named Player of the Game for King’s, who won the bronze. Moriah Jansen, who played strong in every game of the tournament, was named a first team provincial tournament all-star.
Coach Cristie Jansen couldn’t be more proud of her team.
“Going into this season we set some pretty high goals for ourselves,” said Jansen. “We made it to provincials last year and finished 9th, and didn’t graduate anyone last year. We really felt that we had the ability to place in the top 4 this year if we put in the time and effort.
“Winning the bronze exceeded our expectations!”
Jansen said she’d been told this was the best finish for a Salmon Arm basketball team in 26 years.
“I am so thrilled for the success that this amazing team of young ladies has achieved.”
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