LANGLEY — Last season, observers labelled the 2020 B.C. junior boys championship final between St. Pat’s and Sir Winston Churchill one of the best high school basketball games they had ever seen… at any level.
How about that classic, as well as a huge helping of some of the best recent B.C. senior girls basketball championship finals?
The pandemic has shut down B.C. high school championship week here at the Langley Events Centre, but that hasn’t blunted our hope for a return to normalcy this fall, and the resumption of all the sports that make the B.C. high school scene so special.
With that in mind, over this week normally reserved for the B.C. girls high school championships, you can log on here watch, beginning Tuesday, as I provide the play-by-play call on some truly classic games.
On Tuesday (8 p.m.), you can watch St. Patrick’s, led by star Irish Coquia face Vancouver’s Sir Winston Churchill Bulldogs in the 2020 B.C. junior boys title game.
It’s the contest that not only provided blue-chip thrills throughout, but once again pumped new life and vitality into Vancouver’s city game and its ability to make a resurgence on the provincial scene.
Watch it, chart it and remember it because by the time this December rolls around, almost two full years later, the same two teams will be part of the field at the resurgent 2021 Tsumura Basketball Invitational.
On Wednesday (8 p.m.), we continue in the same vein, this time with the 2020 B.C. junior girls championship final as Kelowna’s Dr. Knox Falcons face SMUS of Victoria in the title tilt.
“Obviously we’d always prefer to have live basketball at this time of year, but this opportunity to reflect on all the incredible teams and players we’ve had the privilege of hosting over the years is extremely special in itself, and a great reminder of everything great that will still be coming in the future,” said Tyler Dinwoodie, associate director of event services at the Langley Events Centre.
The rest of the week?
Classic girls championship finals!
6 p.m. — 2014 AA Windsor vs. St. Thomas Aquinas
The skinny — One of the best charges-taken in provincial girls high school history occurs down the stretch drive, but not by any of the ‘stars’ which included Windsor’s Sherri Errico and Brooklyn Legault, and STA’s Vanessa Botteselle.
8 p.m. — 2013 AAA South Kamloops vs. Brookswood
The skinny — The Titans got huge performances from Emma Wolfram and Maya Olynyk as they clashed with the hometown Bobcats led by the likes of Tayla Jackson, Sydney Williams and Jessie Brown.
6 p.m. — 2018 AA final South Kamloops vs. G.W. Graham
The skinny — Maddy Gobeil and Deanna Tuchscherer are nowadays teammates and rising U SPORTS stars with the UFV Cascades. In this one, they were rivals who took turns as game-changing forces in a title tilt that finished in overtime.
8 p.m. — 2016 AAA final Brookswood vs. R.A. McMath
The skinny — Ace Konig’s final high school game capped three seasons of provincial dominance and like every great symphony, was filled with her own special flare, the kind of stuff that made time stand still.
4 p.m. — 2020 AAAA final Semiahmoo vs. Terry Fox
The skinny — The cancelled 2020 season denied Semiahmoo the potential opportunity to annex a third straight B.C. title, yet there seems no doubt that history will only enhance the reputation of a run cut short by the global pandemic. This game, which now stands as a finale a full year ahead of full maturity, is as unique as they come. Brought out of a cave and seated at centre court, could you be convinced that they weren’t all seniors?
It was dues-paying time for Terry Fox, itself a full year younger, and now on the clock as 2021-22’s team to beat.
6 p.m. — 2020 AA final Britannia vs. Langley Christian
The skinny — In a season in which AA girls basketball achieved renaissance status in terms of its ability to blur the lines of tiering like never before, we got a magnificent finale filled with clutch shot-making and heart-stopping defence courtesy of the likes of Makenna Gardner, Shemaiah Abatayo and Surprise Munie.
8 p.m. — 2018 AAA final Kelowna vs. Walnut Grove
The skinny — Incredible pressure defence was the hallmark of Kelowna’s 2018 tourney appearance, keyed by Taya Hanson and Kennedy Dickie. Walnut Grove’s counter included the likes of the talented quartet of Tavia Rowell, Jessica and Sophia Wisotzki and Natalie Rathler.
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