Carson Bell one-on-one with Temwa Mtawali of Isfeld. File photo

Carson Bell one-on-one with Temwa Mtawali of Isfeld. File photo

Courtenay basketball team bumps record to 12-5

Sporting a 12-5 win-loss record, the senior boys basketball team at Vanier Secondary played four days in a row against various schools.

On Wednesday, Jan. 26, the Towhees beat Nanaimo District Secondary 67-61 on the road — its second league game after losing the week before by two points at Dover Bay.

“We needed to get on the winning track,” coach Larry Street said. “Playing at NDSS is always a tough one. They are aggressive, and scrappy.”

Street said his team controlled the game from start to finish, shooting well from the three-point line, and great all-round scoring from four starters. Reed Fournier scored 16 points, Carson Bell and Sam Barnie each had 18 points, and Aidan Walsh had scored 15. Bell also had seven rebounds while Fournier had three steals. Carl Schmitz-Valckenberg chipped in 10 tough rebounds, took two charges and had three blocked shots.

“If it wasn’t for turnovers, the game would have had a larger margin,” Street said.

Vanier lost the following night 60-54 in a home exhibition game against Carihi. Their opponent from Campbell River is led by standout next level player Marcus Shankar, so the Towhees had to pay particular attention to him. Vanier had a firm control of the first half, and everyone played stellar defence en route to a 32-20 lead at the half. Then other Carihi players stepped up and started making great baskets while Vanier got cold, and lost their energy. Two Towhees reached double figures: Barnie with 18 points and Bell with 12. Walsh finished with 11 rebounds.

Friday in Victoria, Vanier dealt the host St. Michael’s University School a 60-37 exhibition loss.

“The house that Nash made famous was a tough one in the first half,” Street said. “SMU played very good zone defence, putting a T and 1 on Barnie.”

Vanier led 23-22 at half. The second half was better for the Towhees as they figured out how to contend with that zone, and outscored SMU 47-13. All Towhees had important playing time, with Walsh leading the way with 18 points and seven rebounds. Bell had 14 points, and Barnie finished with eight points, eight rebounds and five steals. Imraan Abdul chipped in nine points and lots of energy on defence.

In their fourth game in four days Saturday in Colwood, Vanier beat Royal Bay 97-44 in an exhibition. Each Towhee played many minutes, and the entire team played stellar defence on this scrappy team from Colwood. Walsh poured in 26 tough points while Barnie had 16 points, 11 rebounds and five assists. Fournier had 11 points, Tristan Carriere-Bela had 10 points, four steals and four assists, and Schmitz-Valckenberg added nine points and seven rebounds.

“A full team effort,” Street said.

Four of Vanier’s last five games are league games: Tuesday at Cowichan, Thursday at home versus NDSS and Friday at Victoria High.

Feb. 8 and 10 are home games against Dover Bay and Cowichan. Fans are welcome.

Boys basketballCourtenay


Vanier’s Sam Barnie tailed by Temwa Mtawali of Isfeld. File photo

Vanier’s Sam Barnie tailed by Temwa Mtawali of Isfeld. File photo

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