Alberni District Secondary School (ADSS) opened Totem 64 on Thursday night with a pair of wins for both the senior boys’ and senior girls’ basketball teams.
Both teams squared off against Kwalikum Secondary School, although the competing team was delayed by an overturned dump truck near Cameron Lake that temporarily closed Highway 4.
The ADSS boys edged past Kwalikum in a 72-69 win. Although Alberni held a steady lead for most of the game, a fourth quarter comeback from Kwalikum brought them within a single point. With only seconds remaining on the clock, Alberni’s Cameron Cyr managed a steal and a two-pointer to earn Alberni the win.
“I think we played well,” said head coach Craig Brooks after the game. “We knuckled down in the moments we needed to. It was a great way to kick off Totem.”
He has been impressed with the progress of his team, and says the players are “miles above” where they were at the beginning of the season.
“I really feel like the sky’s the limit for this team,” he added.
He did admit that they seem to suffer from a “three-minute meltdown” in most games.
“We get used to that high pace and forget that the clock is sometimes on our side,” he said. “This time, unfortunately, it happened in the last two and a half minutes.”
The team lost one of their major players in Jayson Matthews, after he fouled out early in the fourth quarter.
“He’s the motor, the guy in the locker room who coaches things up,” Brooks said. “I was really impressed by how he was on the bench afterwards, coaching the guys up.”
The ADSS boys play next on Friday evening, where they will take on the winner of the Ballenas vs. Reynolds game.
The ADSS girls, who opened their game on Thursday with a 51-45 win against Kwalikum, will play at 5:15 p.m. in the ADSS gym on Friday. They will take on the winners of Belmont vs. Windsor.
In between the feature games on Friday, a new name will be inducted into the ADSS Wall of Fame.