Last year, the Alberni District Secondary School (ADSS) Armada girls played arguably the most exciting game in Totem tournament history. While they don’t expect to repeat their double overtime performance against Windsor on the basketball court, they hope to put in a solid showing when Totem 65 hits the courts Jan. 9.
Last year’s Friday night game was a thing of high school hoops legend: the Armada tied the game with nine seconds on the clock in the fourth quarter to send it to overtime. It took two overtime periods before Windsor edged the Armada 57–54.
No one cared that the game was more than an hour late finishing.
“I don’t know if that will ever be beat,” Armada girls’ head coach Ryan Broekhuizen said of the record-setting game.
“It was definitely the memory of the season for us. All the returning players, that’s what we talk about in preparing for Totem.”
The team has some new faces this year, and some strong players graduated last June, so Broekhuizen doesn’t know where they will end up in Totem 65, Jan. 9–11.
“We’re definitely a hard-working team; we’re not the highest-skilled team, but we put up the effort, and that’s what people come to see, is the kids trying hard.”
The Armada face Kwalikum in their opening game of Totem, Thursday, Jan. 9 at 7 p.m. at ADSS. The two teams faced each other in December in an ice-breaker tournament, with ADSS on the winning side. Broekhuizen said it should be a good game for his squad, and that they are ready for a re-match.
Team captain Abbie Dods has been putting up the numbers for the Armada girls this season, and Broekhuizen expects her to be a solid scoring player during Totem. “Captain Abbie Dods is really controlling the play and working hard.”
Dods played in Totem 64 last year, and has been playing basketball since Grade 8. She says her favourite Totem memory—this will be her fifth as either a spectator or player—was the double overtime game against Windsor. Except for the loss.
Dods said the team will be in tough getting back into the groove following Christmas break. “It’s hard, because not a lot of people can attend practices. If we work really hard we can accomplish good things,” she said.
The Armada girls’ squad is a mix of Grade 11 and Grade 12 players this year, both Dods and Broekhuizen said.
Memphis Dick, who played a prominent role in the double overtime loss to Windsor at Totem 64, spent most of last season dealing with a knee injury. She started the 2019-20 season strong, but tweaked her knee at the ice-breaker tournament and was on the injured list leading up to the Christmas holiday.
“We’re trying to keep her rested until Totem and hopefully she’ll be ready for that,” Broekhuizen said.