Comox’s Highland Raiders open hoops season with a win

The Highland Raiders triumphed in their senior boys’ AA basketball season opener against the Kwalikum Kondors on Tuesday, Nov. 26, in Qualicum Beach.

The Raiders, have already been busy fundraising in the community, have started off strong under the leadership of new coaches Carly Lapointe and Sebastian Richard.

Highland was hot out of the gates, opening on a 12-0 run, including six points from Luke Yeo.

The second quarter saw newcomer Winsland Mencio chipping in a nice layup while Grade 12 student Will Derksen nailed five of six free throws, as the Raiders took a 22-18 lead into the half.

The intensity could be felt in the stands which were packed full with locals and Highland fans alike, there to witness the mayhem that was the second half of the game.

Six-foot-three defender Sam Ezzy amped up the crowd with an all-money three-pointer followed closely by two two-pointers. Boone Trickett and Josh Taylor both chipped in two two-pointers in the fourth quarter but the Kondors wouldn’t go down without a fight. The last seven minutes of the fourth quarter saw Highland match the Kondors’ ongoing aggressiveness with five fouls of their own and so began the battle of the free throws. Overall, 24 foul shots were taken between the two teams in the 57-52 Highland victory.

Highland is hosting its first tournament of the year this weekend, with teams from Isfeld, Port Alberni and Wellington participating. The tourney starts at 2 p.m. Friday.

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