The boys are on a roll.
North Peace Secondary School’s senior boys’ basketball team has won another tournament, going undefeated at the 2013 Pow Wow Invitational Basketball Tournament in Grande Prairie over the weekend to raise their season’s win streak to 10-0.
NPSS joined teams from Grande Prairie Comp, Glenmary, Beaverlodge, Peace River High School, Peace Wapiti, St. Joe’s and Dawson Creek on Jan. 11 and 12 and won their way to the final on Saturday.
“We had huge performances from our starters, they played most of the game in the Final then we had a couple guys foul out and other step up,” said assistant coach Mike Redford from NPSS’ gym on Tuesday.
To kick off the tournament, the Oscars beat Peace River 82-34 on Friday night to advance and play host Peace Wapiti Academy on Saturday at 12:30. In a close game NPSS edged out a win over PWA 82-75 to advance to the final.
As luck would have it, PWA won their next game to face NPSS again in the final, which was a “gritty” game.
“It was really, really tough playing in their gym with their refs and their crowd,” Redford said. “You could feel it. It was a hostile atmosphere for sure and they were a good team.”
“We were down by 11 at one point, and we came back.”
Again it was a close, comeback win for NPSS, who won the game 75-70 and took first place in the tournament. Mark Dyke was named an All-Star while Cole Bausman received MVP of the entire tournament.
“These two are two of our five starters, and any of starters could be put in those spots,” Redford explained. “Cole doesn’t always get the recognition that some of the other players do because he our defensive player and plays against their best player every game, but he still managers to be a top scorer on our team every game. He does it on both ends of the court, which is why he ended up as MVP this tournament.“
“Mark’s our post, he puts in a lot of work down low. He’s defence, offence, same thing, he’s always working hard.”
Both NPSS and Fort St. John are still adjusting to having a winning basketball team since it’s been years since the community has had one.
To Redford, the success comes as a combination of a number of things.
“The attitude is different,” he said. “Our expectations our higher as coaches that they’ll go to provincials. We’re not playing to just beat Dawson, and that was kind of the expectation before.”
Redford added that the boys are taking it seriously, practising every day, working out, running in their spare time and coming to the gym in the mornings to shoot hoops. It’s a commitment thing.
“They understand when we do these things, we win.”
The Oscars will get to put their B.C. brethren to the test this weekend as the team travels to Prince George to play some potential competition for zones.
“It’s good. We’ll get to see PGSS who’s in our zone and who we need to beat to get to provincials,” Redford said. “Right now I’m hearing that Correlieu is pretty good, they have a strong post player and their coach is their vice principal so they should be pretty disciplined.”
NPSS will be hosting a basketball tournament on Jan. 25 and 26 with teams from around the Peace Region.