The Summerland Middle School Wave Grade 8 girls basketball team made school history by qualifying for the provincial championship for the first time.
The Wave clinched the South Okanagan championship with three wins, including a 43-39 decision over the KVR Express in the final on Feb. 20.
“These two teams match up very closely and have battled hard against each other all year,” said Wave coach Jason Corday. “We have a lot of respect for KVR, they had beaten us previously this season and we knew it would be a tough game.”
The Express led 22-14 at the half.
“The girls were not discouraged at half, they were excited and confident that they could bounce back and win,” said Corday. “These girls have no quit in them. Hats off to KVR, it was a great game.”
A back and forth battle ensued until the Wave went on a six-point run in the fourth quarter to take the lead with two minutes left.
“It was a great final as both teams fought with all they had, while displaying sportsmanship and class,” said Corday.
Lexi Corday, a Grade 7 playing a grade up, rang up 23 points, 10 steals and 10 assists and was named tournament Most Valuable Player. Karrah Roelfsema, who chipped in eight points, and Paige Russill were outstanding defensively for the Wave and contributed offensively.
The Wave opened the championship with a victory over Holy Cross, 66-9, led by Corday’s 22-points, while Roelfsema put up 20. In the semi-final, the Wave took on the Skaha Lake Sharks winning 47-16. Olivia Harrold had a very strong defensive performance and chipped in 12 points, while Corday put up 10 points and Jacqueline Mansiere (named a season all-star) added 10. Harrold was the Waves best defender, while Alyssa Robinson came off the bench to provide spark offensively and great defensive pressure.
The tournament all-star team included: Harrold and Roelfsema (SMS). Emma Barron, Maria Iannone, Sophie Brydon (KVR) and Cassidy Mccafferty (SLMS).
It was the Waves goal at the start of the season to reach provincials. Corday said they worked hard over three years, which included attending fall, spring and summer camp.
Grade 8 Provincials are March 3-5 in Pitt Meadows.