Brookswood's Emma Lenhoff (left) digs in on defence against Yale's Aysia Kumar in the B.C. junior girls semifinals at the Langley Events Centre. (Photo by Mark Steffens property of Vancouver Sports Pictures 2023. All Rights Reserved)
Feature High School Girls Basketball

JUNIOR: It’s Oak Bay and Brookswood on Saturday in the finals of the 2023 B.C. junior girls basketball championships!

BY GARY AHUJA (Special for Varsity Letters)

LANGLEY — Two teams who won their last Junior Girls provincial championships a year apart are now set to play for the big prize on Saturday afternoon.

The Junior Girls Basketball Provincial Invitational Tournament champion will be either the top seed Oak Bay Breakers (who last won in 2012) or the No. 3 Brookswood Bobcats, whose previous title came in 2011.

The winner will be decided on Saturday afternoon at 1:15pm.

Molly Andulajevic (centre of the Oak Bay Breakers) is bookended by Argyle Pipers on Friday in the semifinals of the B.C. junior girls championships at the Langley Events Centre. (Photo by Mark Steffens property of Vancouver Sports Pictures 2023. All Rights Reserved)

No. 1 Oak Bay Breakers 42 No. 5 Argyle Pipers 33

LANGLEY – “Fear is a powerful motivator,” explained Oak Bay coach Aaron Frampton.

The fear his No. 1 ranked team was feeling was the fact they were down six points to the Argyle Pipers in their semi-final matchup, with a spot in Saturday’s championship game on the line.

The Pipers led 26-20, but from that point on, were held to seven points while the Breakers offence found its rhythm, more than doubling their game output in less than half the time.

Eden Henderson – the team’s leading scorer – was held to just four points, all of which came in the first quarter, but Frampton said Jessiah Brehaut stepped up with some big shots while Molly Andulajevic provided great leadership.

“It was just a really strong team effort and the energy coming from our bench was amazing,” he added. “We only go seven (players) deep right now, so I have to give them a lot of credit.”

Another advantage for Oak Bay was dominance on the offensive glass as they continuously picked up multiple possessions.

“Adelle Bergmann – the Player of the Game – was huge for us. She is averaging a double-double for us all year long as a Grade 9. Her future is so bright. She just came up huge for us on the offensive glass,” Frampton said. 

Despite her slow start, Henderson managed to finish with 17 points while Brehaut had 11. For the Pipers – a team consisting entirely of Grade 9s – Isabella Miljkovic scored 11.

No. 3 Brookswood Bobcats 55 No. 10 M.E.I. Eagles 33 

With the games moved to LEC’s Centre Court, Jordyn Nohr took centre stage.

The Grade 8 guard was a scoring machine, scoring in leading the Brookswood Bobcats to a 55-33 victory, ending their Eastern Valley rivals – the M.E.I. Eagles – run to the title. The Eagles entered the 24-team tournament as the 10th seed.

But Friday’s semi-final clash was one-sided in the first half as the Bobcats led 20-6 after a quarter and 41-17 at the half as Nohr was unstoppable, scoring 31 of her 38 points in the first 16 minutes.  

M.E.I. did win the second half, 16-11, but the margin of deficit was just too much.

APOLOGIES — NOTE: Yesterday’s recap accidentally misidentified an Oak Bay Breakers’ player as it should have been Grade 10 forward Eden Henderson who led the team with 34 points.

The author apologizes for his mistake.

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