An airborne Thaskani Mtawali of the Isfeld Ice attempts to block a shot by Vanier guard Kyle Piercy during Tuesday’s senior boys basketball game at Vanier. The Ice won in a thriller, 62-61. Scott Stanfield photo

An airborne Thaskani Mtawali of the Isfeld Ice attempts to block a shot by Vanier guard Kyle Piercy during Tuesday’s senior boys basketball game at Vanier. The Ice won in a thriller, 62-61. Scott Stanfield photo

Isfeld Ice narrowly best Vanier Towhees in last-minute thriller

In their first ever encounter in league play, the Mark R. Isfeld Ice senior boys basketball team narrowly bested the GP Vanier Towhees 62-61 on Jan. 30.

The teams put on a spectacle for the many fans in attendance, which included dozens of students from each of the two Courtenay-based secondary schools.

After a tightly-fought first half, the visiting Ice started to pull ahead in the third and fourth quarters with some strong shooting.

“Our struggle this year has been that we don’t play hard all the time,” said Isfeld head coach Tom Elwood. “Even though we had our problems, I thought we played hard and competed. Especially the defensive end of the floor, when we were outside.”

Isfeld started to falter in the fourth quarter, allowing the Towhees to eventually claw their way back into it. The home team pulled ahead 61-60 with less than a minute to play.

With one last offensive push, the Ice earned two free throws with just 0.6 seconds left on the clock.

Aidan McDonald stepped up to the line, and made no mistake, giving the Isfeld side the win.

Video by Scott Strasser