Alberni Armada senior girls 1-1 at AAA North Island hoops championships

The Alberni District Secondary School Armada senior girls basketball team is one game away from meeting their season goal: making the Island championships.

The Armada senior girls’ basketball team is one-and-one at the AAA North Island championships in Nanaimo and their goal of making the Island championships is still within reach.

On Friday, the team lost their second game 52-44 to league rivals Ballenas Whalers.

In their first games of the tournament on Thursday, the Armada beat NDSS while Ballenas beat GP Vanier in overtime.

The Armada got off to a slow start against Ballenas and was down by 19 points at the half.

They upped their game in the second half surging within six points of the Whalers, but it was too little too late.

“We fought hard in the second half but it was too deep a hole to get all the way out of,” Armada head coach Greg Freethy said.

“The game is over, we’re still in it and it’s time to move on.”

Defensively, the Whalers played a tight man-to-man defense, and they clogged up the paint holding Armada forward Jamie Oliver to 14 points.

But the Armada played stellar defense of its own though.

Katrina Hobbs got the call to stop Ballenas standout Darcy Bennett, who scored 40 points in their first game of the tourney.

“Katrina locked her down and held her to four points,” Freethy said.

“It was the best individual defensive effort I’ve seen of the year.”

The Armada is still in the hunt for a top four finish.

They play Cowichan, who earlier beat Brooks but lost to GP Vanier, on Saturday afternoon.

The winner moves on to the third-fourth place game and advances to the Islands.

Cowichan lost by 20 points to the Armada in a league game earlier this season.

“They’re big, aggressive and mix it up on defense,” Freethy said.

“Our goal from day one was to make the Islands though, and we’re one game away.”

reporter@albernivalleynews.com

*Watch www.albernivalleynews.com for further game updates

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