The Alberni District Secondary School Armada senior girls basketball team has made it to the post season and is letting it all hang out to go further.
The Armada will play at the eight-team AAA North Island championships at Dover Bay in Nanaimo this weekend.
They open against NDSS—who they beat in their last meeting— on Thursday. If they win, they’ll face rival Ballenas Whalers—against whom they are 1-1 this season—on Friday.
Only the top four teams will advance to the Island Championships, which are being hosted in Port Alberni next weekend.
“We have to qualify first so we’re not going to get ahead of ourselves,” head coach Greg Freethy said.
“But we’ve been playing strong as of late.”
The Armada have been battle tested and are 21-14 on the season.
Their most valuable games have been against teams from Victoria, where they most recently beat Belmont but lost to Lambrick Park.
“Playing those teams has made us better this season, you can’t beat that competition.”
The stress of being the first girls team to play in the inaugural girls division at Totem also prepared the team for the post season.
“We’ve been playing consistently well at just the right time,” Freethy said.
<img src="http://raven.b-it.ca/portals/uploads/alberni/.DIR288/girlshoops2-feb18-8855.jpg" width="225" height="151"
Ball passing drill.
Nanaimo’s Dover Bay is likely the team to beat at the North Islands.
The teams who have mastered fundamentals stand the best chance of making the top four, Freethy said.
Those include “tenacious defense, strong rebounding on both ends of the floor and good decision making with the ball,” he said.
The team has lost guard Sam Paquette to an ankle injury.
But they’ve bolstered their lineup with junior players Janine Robinson, Julia Hudson and Denae Edgar.
The addition of Robinson gives the Armada four post players over 5’10”.