The Isfeld Ice senior boys basketball team capped off the first week back from winter break with a third-place finish at the 60th Totem Classic in Port Alberni over the weekend.
Isfeld defeated Reynolds Roadrunners, the #1 3A team in Victoria, 52-39 in their first game. Down four at the half, the Ice opened up the second half on a 14-2 run to take control of the game. Reynolds was held to just six points in the third quarter. Noah Kaefer led the scoring with 19 points, however it was a tremendous defensive effort in the second half that staked Isfeld to the win.
In the semifinal Isfeld faced a physical Guilford Park Sabres of Surrey and were edged 59-58. A lack of execution in the final two minutes cost the Ice the win, said coach Tom Elwood. Up by seven, they failed to deal with the pressure applied by Guilford Park and gave up eight straight points. Kaefer scored 26 and Nic Xylinas added 18.
In the third-place game Isfeld faced a tough Ballenas Whalers team and came out on fire, scoring 27 in the first quarter, hitting six threes, and chasing the Whalers into a zone. Tied at the half and then going down by six midway through the third quarter, the Ice fought back to go up by two at the start of the fourth.
Switching to a zone of their own due to foul trouble, Isfeld went on a 12-0 run to go up by eight in the early stages of the final quarter. Ballenas was forced to foul at the end of the game in order to get the ball back and Xylinas went 3-for-4 to close out the game.
Xylinas was the game’s top scorer with 21 followed by Kaefer with 17. “It was the change to a 2-3 zone at the start of the fourth that threw the Whalers off, and they scored only one basket in the entire quarter,” Elwood noted.
FREE THROWS The Ice opened league play last Tuesday with a 60-52 win over the Carihi Tyees of Campbell River … the Ice led 23-22 at the half and opened up leads as big a 15 in the second half … leading scorer was Kaefer with 33 … this week the Ice are at Timberline for league play and then on the weekend at the Docker tournament in Esquimalt …
– Isfeld Ice Basketball