Susie Hang of Vanier vies for possession of the ball against an Alberni opponent during Island championships. Sienna Barth (left) and Shelby Turnbull of the Towhees are ready to lend a hand. Vanier defeated Alberni 65-55.

Towhees girls stung by Stelly’s at Island championships

Vanier just misses a chance to play for back door berth to B.C. hoops tourney

The back door to the B.C.s beckoned to the Vanier Towhees senior girls basketball team. But Stelly’s Stingers slammed it shut on them.

The Towhees were in Port Alberni for the Vancouver Island 3A championships on Feb. 19-21 and lost to Stelly’s 66-60 in overtime in a four-team playoff to determine the third Island berth to the provincials.

“Poor shooting at the free throw line and missing layups hurt us,” said Vanier coach Heidi Zirkl. “However we pressed them well and ran an exciting fast break.” Top scorer was Hope Lewis with 22. Sienna Barth added 11 and Sloan Hofmann had 10 points and eight rebounds before fouling out early in the fourth quarter.

The Towhees dropped their opener at the Islands 50-32 to Mount Douglas with two starters fouling out. “Poor shooting and many turnovers hurt us,” Zirkl said.

Hofmann had 15 points, 12 rebounds and seven steals while Barth tallied eight points and Chloe Speed collected nine rebounds.

Vanier used a good fast break and press defence to defeat Alberni 65-55 in their second game. Barth and Speed scored 17 points each while Lewis and Bernie Enriquez added 11 apiece. Hofmann had nine rebounds and 10 steals.

Stelly’s went on to defeat Belmont in OT to finish third and and earn a chance at provincials.

North Champs

The Towhees went to the Islands as the North #1 seed. At the North Islands, they defeated Dover Bay 54-22 as Barth (14), Lewis (12) and Enriquez (12) led the scoring.

In the championship game they knocked off Cowichan 52-32 with Speed (13), Hang (11) and Molly Mifsud (11) pacing the attack.

“All in all it was a good season with an overall record of 18-13,” Zirkl said. “With only two graduating seniors, the Towhees are looking forward to next season,” she added.


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