Lakers driven to improve

Lakers Grade 9 and 10 girls basketball teams please coaches in home tournament

PENTICTON’S Lyndzie Caron drives around Kamloops defender Hannah McDonald last Saturday during the Lakers’ Junior Girls Basketball tournament.

PENTICTON’S Lyndzie Caron drives around Kamloops defender Hannah McDonald last Saturday during the Lakers’ Junior Girls Basketball tournament.

The Pen High Lakers Grade 9 girls basketball team finished fourth after winning two of four games during their junior tournament last weekend.

The Lakers, led by tournament all-star Lyndzie Caron, won their opening two games 48-34 against the Mt. Boucherie Bears and 51-9 against Castlegar’s Stanley Humphries Rockettes.

Against the Bears, Caron finished with 14 points and eight steals, while Annik Cole scored 10 points.

Against the Rockettes, Lakers coach Dustin Hyde said his players performed hard and stayed focused.

The Lakers then lost to the South Kamloops Titans 42-30. The Titans entered the weekend ranked sixth in the province.

Caron scored nine points and grabbed 10 boards, while making six steals.

Jean Grakul came off the bench and provided a huge spark, dropping 10 points, six of them from three-point range. She earned player of the game honors.

The Lakers closed the tournament losing 48-31 against Lord Tweedsmuir 10, who entered the tournament ranked No. 3. Hyde said it wasn’t the best game for his group. Callie Anderson was named player of the game for her tough defensive play.

The team heads to Vernon this weekend for another  tournament.

The Lakers Grade 10 team, coached by Jonathan Wikerd, placed sixth at the tournament.

Against the Kelowna Owls, the Lakers lost 46-24. A height advantage was a problem for the Lakers who struggled to get close to the basket.

Against Salmon Arm, strong ball movement helped the Lakers win 56-36 and a second-place finish in their pool.

That pitted them against Vernon Secondary. They played well, earning a 39-29 win.

The Lakers’ final game was a 41-25 loss to Lord Tweedsmuir 9. The Lakers fought hard to keep within seven points after the third quarter, but ran out of gas.

“It was a great opportunity to see how we match up against our zone opponents and run a few of our systems,” said Wikerd, who was pleased with their final results.

“A few things that I want the girls to work on is communication and movement away from the ball.”

Tournament MVPs for the Lakers was Kelsey Rowlands. Sydney Foster led the Lakers offensive attack. Franziska Jakob, an exchange student from Germany, made several steals. On Monday the Lakers rocked Princeton 64-14. Jaimy Coates led the charge offensively with 15 points. The Lakers 10 team is travelling to Vernon for the Panther Pit-Stop 2014 tournament. They open against OK Mission.

The Mustangs, who helped host, won one of four games, their lone victory coming against the Rockettes. Mustangs coach Sandra Richardson said her players worked hard in every game.

“We have been plagued with injury this season but compete hard every game and support one another throughout,” she said.