Vancouver College's Lucas Tan-Ngo was the floor general his Fighting Irish against Udhay Grewal and the Enver Creek Cougars during quarterfinal action Sunday during the BC junior boys championships at the Langley Events Centre. (Photo by Ryan Molag property Langley Events Centre-TFSE 2024. All Rights Reserved)
Feature High School Boys Basketball

B.C. Junior Boys 2024 Elite 8: Game-turning treys from Tan-Ngo, Mayott propel VC Fighting Irish past Enter Creek and into Final Four!


LANGLEY — There was a critical juncture in Sunday’s quarterfinal clash here at the 2024 B.C. junior boys basketball champions where you could pause, scratch your head and think that just maybe you could see a slight crack in the armour of this current edition of the Vancouver College Fighting Irish.

The same group of student-athletes who had won B.C. titles at the Grade 8 and 9 levels was doing a very good job of never looking too far ahead in its chase of one of the most elusive trifectas in the provincial boys hoops.

Yet Surrey’s Enver Creek Cougars, a team with athleticism, great length and even greater heart had seeminlgy picked the perfect time to make a 16-8 game-turning run.

From an Irish perspective, that meant dealing with all of the internal issues that comes with having an 11-point lead shrink to just three in a very low-scoring game.

Yet that’s just when they stepped up biggest.

Lucas Tan-Ngo and Micah Mayott took turns hitting back-to-back three-pointers, turning a 36-33 lead into a much more comfortable 42-33 advantage, all en route to a 44-38 win and a berth in Monday’s semifinal against the St. Patrick’s Celtics.

“Those two threes…” began Irish head coach Siamak Salehi, unable to supress a chuckle of incredulity, “…we have struggeld all year with our three-point shooting. The fact that those guys were able to (come through) in the biggest game of the seaosn and give us that cushion, that along with our amazing defence was enough for us.”

There was only one double-figure scorer for either team Sunday and that was Tan-Ngo, the 6-foot guard who is held in very high esteem arund the Cartier Street campus.

“Our captain Lucas Tan-Ngo did a great job of showing composure and knocking down that last free throw and playing incredible defence on that last possession,” said Salehi.

“All year we’ve talked about how our depth is our biggest thing, and with the experience of this team,” he said of its two prior provincial titles, “that experience is showing in these late-game situations.”

Sam Asung, Mayott and Nathan Chen each scored six points for the winners.

Smeer Sandhar led Enver Creek with nine points while Gurtaj Hans added eight for the Cougars. Avi Khanna and Udhay Grewal each added six more.

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