Knights go 2-3 at OFSAA tourney

Good show by KDSS at provincial championships
Section: 
Sports

By Josh Howald

After a tough start at the provincial high school basketball championships, the Kincardine District Secondary School senior girls scrapped their way back to play in the consolation championship.

The Knights at the OFSAA banquet. From left, Kara MacDonald, Jorie Elliott, Bethany Wilkin, Mackenzie Stevens, Andrea Plagos, Charlotte Bate, Nicole MacLeod, Marley Martyn, Nicole McLeod, Cassidy Murray-Collins, Eartha Phorson, Jessica Satosek and coach Vince Yenssen. (photo courtesy of Marley Martyn)

 

The OFSAA championship tournament, was in a way, quite similar to their season - full of ups and downs, some tough losses, some gratifying wins and more than a few laughs.

"From the start of September they have basically focused on basketball six days a week," said Vince Yenssen, coach of the senior girls basketball CWOSSA A champions.

"They grew together and experienced both failure and success together," said Vince Yenssen, coach of the CWOSSA A champions. "They were a very special group of girls and they earned everything. It was a very complete team up and down the roster, and the (KDSS) staff, students and myself couldn't be more proud of what they accomplished this year."

What they accomplished was a perfect record in Bluewater Athletic Association regular season action, a CWOSSA A championship and a 2-3 record against some of the best high school basketball teams in the province.

"They set a goal, worked extremely hard and achieved it," said Yenssen, whose team lost two impact players to injury, and continued to roll through the competition.

But things weren't easy at OFSAA tournament in Ingleside, near Cornwall. The Knights were seeded 10th in the 20-team tournament of champions, and first met up with the #4 seed , Villanova College on Thursday afternoon. Villanova jumped out to a 15-5 lead in the first quarter, and were up by nine at the half. Kincardine trailed by 22 points at one point in this game, but the Knights didn't quit and outscored Villanova 15-4 in the fourth quarter to make things interesting at the end. Villanova escaped with a 33-30 win over KDSS, and eventually found their way to the OFSAA gold medal game (where they were defeated by Novelle-Alliance). Bethany Wilkin led all scorers in this game with 12 points.

The second game against Rideau District High School wasn't as close. The Lady Lions were hitting every shot the threw up, and before you could blink they held a 21-2 lead that KDSS simply could not dig out of. It was 29-6 at the half, and the final damage was 60-19 for RDHS. Andrea Plagos returned from an ankle injury to lead Kincardine scorers with six points. Nicole McLeod and Jorie Elliott each chipped in four. The loss put an OFSAA medal out of reach for Kincardine, but didn't eliminate the Knights.

Moved to the consolation side of the brackets, KDSS drew Englehart High School. The Spartans and Knights were closely matched teams, and they went back and forth all game until KDSS finally pulled away in the fourth quarter. It was a two-point game at the half. But Kincardine found some scoring touch in the fourth and outscored the Spartans 14-4 down the stretch to post a 42-28 win - Kincardine's first ever win at a provincial girls basketball tournament.

Marley Martyn had 13 points for the Knights, while McLeod added 12 and Plagos scored six. EDHS was eliminated and KDSS moved on to play EJ Lajeunesse. The Knights were up 11 at half and cruised to an 18-point victory. Jessica Satosek, also back from injury, led all scorers with 11 points in this 44-26 Kincardine win. Plagos and Martin each scored 10 points for Kincardine as well.

"We had two really nice character wins before running into a great team in the consolation final," said Yenssen.

That team was Rothwell-Osnabruck. ROSS outclassed KDSS in this game, pouring in 35 second half points in a 63-38 win over Kincardine. The Knights trailed by just eight at the half, but couldn't match the offensive power of their opponents. Elliott had 13 points for Kincardine, while Satosek scored nine.

"The whole experience was first rate," said Yenssen.

"It was a great experience, and an awesome way to end the season," said Martyn on Monday morning.