Spartans snag second place

by Derek Cornet

The Carpenter High School Spartans claimed the runner-up spot at their 2014 home basketball tournament last weekend.

Carpenter High School in Meadow Lake hosted its 2014 Boys Invitational Basketball Tournament Jan. 17 and 18. The local team finished second after winning their first two games. The Spartans advanced to the championship final, but were defeated 74-49 by St. Mary High School in Prince Albert. Here, Spartan Brodie Derocher makes a pass during the final game.

Carpenter High School in Meadow Lake hosted its 2014 Boys Invitational Basketball Tournament Jan. 17 and 18. The local team finished second after winning their first two games. The Spartans advanced to the championship final, but were defeated 74-49 by St. Mary High School in Prince Albert. Here, Spartan Brodie Derocher makes a pass during the final game.

Eight teams from across the province competed Jan. 17-18 in the two-day annual CHS invitational. In their first game, CHS came up against Beauval’s Valleyview School and beat them 50-39, before advancing and conquering John Paul II Collegiate of North Battleford.

In the championship final, CHS clashed with St. Mary High School of Prince Albert. The visiting team quickly assured CHS they’d need to fight for a win, pulling ahead 42-22 after the first half. But even after coming back in the second-half with a vengeance, the Spartans couldn’t keep St. Mary at bay and fell 74-49.

“In the first two games, we really pressed the teams, which is where we gained our momentum,” CHS basketball coach Kendra Paramchuk said. “But, when we came up against St. Mary, it’s hard to press against a team like that because the entire team can score.”

Even though the team didn’t come out on top, Paramchuk said she’s proud of what they’ve accomplished and feels they’re better prepared for the upcoming New Waterford Coal Bowl Classic in Nova Scotia. At that tournament, which runs Feb. 1 to Feb. 9, CHS will compete against teams from across the country.

“For our boys, as much as the final match wasn’t a win or a victory, it did feel like we’re at the next step and a lot of them realize it was a good game,” she said.

St. Mary coach Dale Regel said CHS is a very skilled teamed and praised them for their ambition in the final game. He added the team was able to drive the ball deep while always taking the opportunity to take a shot. Regel said CHS made his team work for the win.

“They’re a well-coached team and they’re well-versed in the game of baskeball,” he said. “That’s what we have come to expect from Meadow Lake.”

Grade 11 Spartan Aaron Varjassy said, while he’s disappointed the team didn’t finish the tournament in first place, he’s impressed by how far the team has come.

“This was a big deal for us and we really played well as a team,” he said. “We didn’t finish how we would have liked, but the tournament had several positives.”

Teammate and Grade 12 athlete Eric Rowland also expressed his joy regarding the progress the team has made. While a team like St. Mary – which is currently one of the best teams in the province – usually scores more than 100 points, Rowland said he’s proud the Spartans were able to prevent that from happening.

“Our effort was really there and I’m excited to see what we can do at our next tournament,” he said.

Meanwhile, the CHS girls basketball team was on the road Jan. 17 to compete in Moose Jaw’s tournament. The team played four games, winning two. Coach Jordan Hansen said the girls played hard, but ended up letting their emotions get the most of them and dug themselves into holes they couldn’t climb out of.

“They were able to handle themselves against Estevan and Moose Jaw, but in the other two games, the holes were too deep and we couldn’t come back from them,” he said.

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