In the second week of Thunderball Basketball on April 13, the Grade 4 and 5 players at Lake Trail Middle School learned important skills in the first half hour to be implemented in the game that followed. With full attendance, the players learned the skills very quickly and did a great job of paying attention and trying to learn. It was nice to watch such a young group soak up the instruction, led by head coach Blake Tobacca.
Then onto to the games, which the players always look forward to. The Heat played the Sonics. The game was very fast paced with lots of fast breaks from both teams. The players are learning to look ahead and pass the ball, as they are learning this is the fastest way to move the ball up the court. It is more and more looking like a team game as these young players develop their skills.
Some of these young players get exhausted quickly moving up and down the court so quickly, however this is good as they will eventually get in shape by just playing the game. Team Heat prevailed in this fast paced game with excellent shooting and defence; Kyle Papineau was a star.
In the other game, the Warriors played the Dangles. The Warriors displayed excellent passing to defeat the Dangles team. It was a beauty to watch all these young players passing the ball up the court to defeat the Warriors, and Ashlin Speed certainly lived up to her name. Great drives and great passing by Ashlin. Her teammates are learning this is a team game and by including all players they can accomplish their goals together. Well done by all. Kudos to Max Lloyd for outstanding play.
Week #2 for the Grade 6 and 7 girls was played at G.P. Vanier. This is a three-team league of 22 girls who play round robin every week, all practise together completing various drills, and are treated much like a club program. There are eight keen coaches assisting with stations each week, and we should see all these girls improving tremendously over the next month. The players who so far have stood out are Julia Jungwirth, Angelique Kennedy and Kaylee Lasota.
In Grade 6 and 7 boys at Vanier, the Suns took on the Bulls. The Suns struggled to get rebounds, but coach Madison Naswell felt her team played well. They were unselfish and really enjoyed playing together. They produced some good shots, especially the Trask brothers, but the bounces just didn’t go their way. Meanwhile, Ian Rutledge cleared the boards and generally was a pain for the Suns, dominating the inside play.
In Nets vs. Spurs, Luke Yeo led the way for the Nets in a game where everyone passed well, and all got involved in a lopsided win. The Nets also pressed the Spurs early and this contributed to many easy layups. For the Spurs, coach Tim Wilson focused on having good floor spacing, and keeping the heads up to see all the floor. Cedric Rechsteiner has shown good improvement over the first two weeks, and Eric Jung worked very hard on defence.
In SkyWalkers vs. Thunder, coach Tony Edwards loved the way the SkyWalkers hustled all over the floor, especially Paolo Toribio and Jeremy Knopp. Jordan Dennis was great in the fast break, and the whole team showed excellent passing. For the Thunder Josh Garrett and Peter Greaves tried their best to hold back the SkyWalkers, but they and their teammates were over run by a tenacious team defence.
Sunday’s Sonics vs. Pacers game showed great defence by the Sonics, and from their defence many fast break baskets were made. The Sonics were down by eight at half time, but then they revved up the pressure leading to many interceptions.
The rebounding by both teams was also superb, and all the boys showed lots of tenacity, especially Cedar Lloyd. For the Pacers Thomas Demeo was a monster on the boards, and great hustle was shown by Joe Taylor-Harding.
There are no games during Easter weekend, and play begins again at Vanier and Lake Trail for all teams on Sunday, April 27.
– Thunderball Basketball