WESTLOCK - There’s no doubt that St. Mary School’s senior boys basketball team is the top-ranked 1A club in the region following a dominant 3-0 performance that saw them capture the boys side of the 16-team North Central Zone Ranking Tournament hosted Jan. 13-14 at the Rotary Spirit Centre (RSC).
The veteran-laden Sharks, who are the defending zone champs, opened with a 75-28 drubbing of the St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Academy Falcons Friday night, then easily outpaced the New Sarepta Community High School Saints 80-57 in the Saturday-morning semifinal. In the final played later that afternoon, the boys dominated from the opening tip and spanked the Neerlandia Covenant Canadian Reformed School Stingerz 75-31.
First-year head coach Ty Snell called the result an “encouraging start” to their quest to repeat as zone champs as they hadn’t seen any of these clubs so far this season.
“All the boys played and all the boys were able to make contributions, so all around it was a good team win,” said Snell. “For the most part, I think these will be the teams we’ll see again at the zones, but there may be a few others. But since this is the ranking tournament, most of the teams that are planning on going to zones did attend.”
And while it’s hard to critique a perfect weekend, Snell said they still have some work to do in advance of the zone championship March 10-11 in Thorsby/Breton. As for tournament action, the Sharks get next weekend off, then head to a five-school event hosted in Hay Lakes, Bawlf, Camrose, Tofield and New Sarepta Jan. 27-28 and return to the RSC Feb. 3-4 to host the Cathy Mitchell/W.J. Kallal Memorial Tournament.
“We just have to sharpen up our defence. In some of these games you can kind of let down your guard a little bit and play a little sloppy, so we just have to clean that up,” he said. “We just want to keep taking it one quarter at a time, one game at a time and make sure we play a complete game.”