Bballnationals Boys: Day 1

10:00am Games

Dynamite U17 vs VanCity Basketball

VanCity basketball scored first with a 7-0 run before Dynamite could put 2 of their own. VanCity dominated on both ends early on, but lost their significant lead when Dynamite came back to tie VanCity at 19 points even with just under five minutes to go.

VC stepped up and put up a few more layups to take the lead, but Dynamite wasn’t ready to quit. They went neck-and-neck until the end of the first half, with Dynamite slightly up 33-28.

The opening minutes of the second proved to be a battle to stay in the lead--VanCity pressured Dynamite, with both teams struggling to hit the hoops. VC amped it up and finally took the lead again over their opponent, which they played hard to keep.

VanCity ended the game with a final score of 64-58 over Dynamite in what ended up being a very tough fought battle on both sides.

NexGen vs Salmon Arm Synergy

NextGen scored first, but Salmon Arm Synergy came back with 3 of their own. The boys locked down D on both ends for first the few minutes, but NextGen came back with another two to take the lead. The first half was crazy even, with both teams hitting the scoreboard on back-to-back possessions to fight to stay ahead.

NextGen kicked it into high gear and more than doubled their opponent with just under five minutes to go in the first; led 28-12. After complete domination in the paint, NextGen led 34-18 at the end of the first half.

With a packed audience around them, both teams came to win in the next half, with NextGen continuing their climb in points. Synergy, despite trailing, never gave up. The boys battled hard in hopes of taking the lead, but it just wouldn’t be enough.

NextGen won with a final score of 58-49 over Salmon Arm Synergy.

Player of the Game # 11 Chris Ogie had this to say following the win:

“It feels great; we went out there and did our thing, tried hard, slacked a bit there in the second half but came back. I can’t win player of the game without my team--we went out there as a team and got the win.”

North Stars U17 vs Northern Bounce

It was an incredibly close game from start to finish. Northern Bounce led just 40-34 after the first half.

The second half swayed between leaders as the North Stars were eying the W and even took a slight lead near the end of the game. With a bit more back-and-forth play, Northern Bounce led by just 1 point with 18 seconds to go. Would it be enough time for the North Stars to come back and take their first win?

Bounce sunk in a foul shot giving them a solid 2-point lead and unfortunately for North Stars, they just could not find the hoop on their last possession. Northern Bounce clinched their first win of the tournament with a final score of 57-55.

Player of the Game # 20 Jordan Foster had this to say after the close game:

“In the end, we came through in the clutch and had some big plays.”

Foster scored 10 points for Northern Bounce.

Calgary Storm vs North Stars

The Storm raced out to a 12-5 start, as the North Stars couldn’t seem to handle the Storm’s inside presence. However, the North Stars went on a run to make it just a three point game at the seven minute mark, and eventually took a 27-26 lead.

At this point, you think it would be wire to wire the rest of the way. But you would be wrong. The Storm stormed back and went on a 18-3 run of their own, taking a healthy lead into halftime.

The second half saw the North Stars come back yet again, making it just a three point game with eight minutes to go. But the Storm scored 20 points the rest of the way, compared to just nine for the North Stars — as a result, Calgary took this one 83-71.

“We just started picking up our defence” said the Storm’s Alonzo Tan afterwards. [. . .] Our team ended up pulling out the win with some fast break layups and some threes.”

Tan had 17 points for the Storm, while Tre Campbell had 20 for the North Stars.

Dynamite U15 vs Northern Bounce U17

In a battle of BC, Dynamite had the first strike. They led 12-4 early, on the back of some timely three point shooting. In the second half Dynamite continued to shoot the ball well from distance. But, Northern Bounce got some defensive stops and scored 10 straight to tie it at 39 late in the game. From there, Dynamite put the clamps down and saw this one out 51-46.

“We played great defence, got a few turnovers, and got some easy layups on the fast break” said Dyanmite’s Dima Gadashev on the turnaround late.

Ethan Fung of the Dynamite had 12 points, while Cam Sole of Northern Bounce had 16.

Stormhawks vs North Stars United

The North Stars didn’t take this game lightly — it was 21-3 around the 10 minute mark for the team from Toronto. The Stormhawks tried to mount a run of their own, but the North Stars defence was just too much to handle. At the half, it was 56-17 for the North Stars and they didn’t really look back from there, winning 95-39.

“We worked really well as a team” said the North Stars’ Jakob Pavkovic. “We played really well on defence, we were really high intensity, and ran the floor to get easy buckets.”

11:20am Games

IEM Spartans vs Bata Sports

This game started out close right from the jump! Bata passed well in transition and guarded the ball with ease in order to gain a decent lead over their opponent. With a promising first half on both ends, Bata Sports led 27-24 over the IEM Spartans.

Spartans’ Coach must have lit a fire under his boys as they came back with a vengeance in the second! With exceptional defensive plays, they held IEM to minimal points while sinking a few beauties of their own. They led 45-39 after the first six minutes of play.

The intensity of this game continued as time drained on the clock, with the Spartans fighting for the win and continuing to keep the lead. They killed it in this half, defeating Bata Sports 70-56.

# 7 Joseph Ogunleye was named POG with 16 points for the Spartans.

“We worked as a team, just passing well and making good shots,” said Ogunleye. He’s most looking forward to winning every game and playing together as a team.

Northern Bounce vs Vancouver Selects Green

Northern Bounce were first to put up points with a small 4-0 run; however, Vancouver Selects led 34-25 at the end of the first half.

Van Selects took it to the next level in the second, hitting many of their field goals and continuing as the leader for the duration of the game. In the end, Vancouver Selects Green defeated Northern Bounce with a final score of 63-37.

# 10 Zach Zapanta led his team with 20 points.

VanCity Basketball vs Live2Give

VanCity raced out to a 21-5 lead, but Live2Give went on a 13-5 run right after to make it close at the end of the first half. Unfortunately, that is a close as they would come as Live2Give fell to VanCity Basketball 64-48.

“We played hard” said VanCity’s Tyler Mah afterwards. “Lots of good defence, our offence was passing a lot, cutting. It was great”

Westshore Dawgs vs Split Second U13

Split Second scored over 40 points in the first half and cruised to a 104-39 victory over the Westshore Dawgs. Split Second got mad buckets in this one, scoring seemingly at will.

“We played good defence, we scored and played together” said Split Second’s Finn McDougall on how the game went for his team.

Dynamite U13 vs Vancouver Selects Purple

Wesley Ainu’u had 16 points as the Vancouver Selects Purple beat the Dynamite U13 58-36. Vancouver never trailed in this one, although Dynamite put some pressure on them at the end of the second half.

12:30pm Games

MacHoops U17 vs Westshore Dawgs

Westshore Dawgs were first to hit the board with a nice little layup from #7. Machoop held their own, keeping it a tight game early on. With just five minutes to go in the half, we had ourselves a tied game at 19 points each.

MacHoops took a slight lead, with # 17 Usman Tung going off--he had 20 points in the first half alone. Heading into the second, his team led 28-25.

The Dawgs had a whole lot of bite in the next half, putting up a few points before MacHoops could get to the hoop. As the time clock ticked on, both sides kept it close and denied hoop access early on. They hit a couple shot clock buzzer beater and continued their point climb with a lead of 41-32 over Machoops with just 10 minutes to go.

Westshore Dawgs seemed to find their fit on the court by making impeccable lineup swaps, which kept players fresh on both offense and defense. With an epic recovery, the Dawgs won 55-46 over MacHoops in their first matchup of the day.

Coach Kevin Brown had this to say about his team after the comeback win:

“We stopped their best player from scoring 21-28 points in one half,” he said with a chuckle. “Plus our leader was on the bench for the first half from trouble, so getting him back on obviously changes the game, as well. So I think just calming down, getting the right guys back on the floor, and following a game plan seemed to work.”

Salmon Arm Synergy vs Dynamite U17

Dynamite U17 and Salmon Arm Synergy played an extremely tight game. Dynamite led 27-26 after the first half. Though Synergy kept within just one point for much of the second, Dynamite clinched the win with a final score of 59-54.

Player of the Game Wilson Yu scored a monstrous 23 points and says they truly came together as a team to take the win.

“I’m looking forward to continuing to play with my teammates and win as many games as we can [at Bballnationals].”

VanCity Basketball vs StormHawks A Johnson

While the StormHawks were the first to hit a layup, VanCity Basketball showed up for this entire game, taking the lead 42-23 at the half.

Continuing their hot streak into the second, they dominated with endless layups and pristine passing. Winning their first game with a final score of 74-42, VanCity Basketball shut down the StormHawks A Johnson by showing us the team’s ability to come together on either side of the court.

# 11 led this team with 14 points.

Stormhawks vs Dynamite

It was incredibly high scoring early on, as both teams combined for close to 70 points with four minutes left on the clock in the first half. Dynamite managed to pull away after that, using their superior size advantage to dominate down low. Dynamite won this one 91-55.

“We try not to have that mindset” said the Dynamite’s Hazara Jawanda about how confident his team was heading into their game with the North Stars. “We try every game like a new game. [. . .] they’re a big team and they’re going to be good.”

Wolfpack vs North Stars

The Wolfpack never got their offence going, scoring only 10 points in the first half. By that point, they were in too much of a hole to bounce back as North Stars won 88-24.

“We were just playing as a team” said North Star’s Tiger Judge after his team’s victory. “We were getting out on the fast break, getting easy buckets.”

Northern Bounce vs North Stars U16

It was tight early on, as the North Stars had just a four point lead early in the half. Both teams traded buckets after that, before Northern Bounce went on a 7-4 run that gave them a 74-60 win.

“We had a loss this morning, so we just wanted to come out with more intensity” said Northern Bounce’s Amir Dhillon. “We rely heavily on our guard play, and our guards just took over the game.”

1:45pm Games

CBA Cobra U17 vs StormHawks C Johnson

CBA hit the courts in an exhibition game--since some StormHawks were sent home for disciplinary reasons--against a StormHawks team that was pieced together just moments before the game. CBA went on a massive 20-0 run before the Hawks could find the hope for 2.

CBA had a strong 33-10 lead at the end of the first.

While the second half showed promising effort by the Hawks, CBA demolished again offensively, putting up another 22 points. They defeated the StormHawks C Johnson with a final score of 65-41.

Northern Bounce vs Split Second U13

The Split Second U13 boys absolutely crushed Northern Bounce in the first half, going on a 29-0 run within the first 8 minutes.

Despite a tiny run, the North could not bounce back. They trailed their opponent by 30+ points before the second. Split Second had a huge lead 45-8.

It was déjà vu to start the next half, with Split Second putting up 12 points before Northern Bounce finally had a chance at the foul line to sink one in. Still, Split Second’s lead by 50+ points would be far too much for Bounce to catch. For the second time today, Split Second dominated their opponent and took their second win, with a final score of 77-11.

# 43 Trey Ebose won POG honours and says he’s most exciting about potentially getting noticed for the NBA is what it’s all about at Bballnationals.

“We moved the ball around very well and we got a lot of rebounds, we finished strong, too. All around, we played very good together.”

VanCity Basketball vs Vancouver Selects Purple

VanCity used their deadly three-point shooting to take a nine point lead early in the game. They led 29-22 at the half, and in the second they ran the floor excellently and won 62-43.

“I thought our team did pretty well” said VanCity’s Denayden Lee-Daniel. “We had the lead, then came back and forth, but I thought our team played very well.”

Vancouver Selects Green vs Westshore Dawgs

A filthy block from Cole Bekkering seemed to inspire his teammates, as they went on 17-5 run and lead at the half. But in the second half, Westshore didn’t seem to have the same offensive spark — that went all to the Vancouver Selects, highlighted by a Zach Zapanta deep three. They also started getting to the hoop more and the result was a 81-74 win over the Westshore Dawgs.

“We just kept going” said Zapanta afterwards on his team’s win. “The one time we let off, we all went together and made sure that [Cole Bekkering] was stopped. We got up on them as well.”

Live2Give vs Dynamite U13

Both teams came out tentative to start, as they battled for every loose ball and rebound. The Dynamite took advantage, scoring some timely buckets to take a 24-19 lead into half. In the second half, Dynamite continued their strong defensive and took it 47-43 over Live2Give.

Will Hyland had 11 points for the Dynamite.

3:00 Games

Dynamite U14 vs Grassroots Elite

You already knew it was going to be a hype game just by the amount of people who came out to watch this one. With a stacked team, including Ontario star Elijah Fisher, Grassroots Elite came out strong in their first match of the day. By rarely turning over the ball, sinking nearly every possession, and clutching up on D, they went on a 26-0 run--which was finally broken with a lovely layup by Gavin Fagrie for Dynamite.

With nearly flawless passing paired with 9 monster dunks by Fisher (seriously, check those highlights because this kid is INSANE), Grassroots led the first 56-6.

The Elite boys from the 6ix lit it up again in the second, easily sinking their layups and dunking on their opponents whenever possible. Despite the push for points from the Dynamite (who were all smiles considering the point deficit), they just could not compete with Grassroots. For real, it looked like men playing against boys.

After a full-on demolition on the court, Grassroots Elite won by a whopping 97-18.

# 14 Romad Dean led his team with 26 points and had this to say after the game:

“We played with intensity--we knew we were going to win. It was a good game, but we just played better than them.”

Dean is confident that Grassroots Elite will be crowned the 2018 tournament champs.

Northern Bounce Red vs Northwest Basketball

Home first to put up points; close game tied at 4 just under 12 minutes to go in the first. Not many chances to score thanks to stellar defending on both sides of the court. Once the game got going, both teams kept it extremely tight. Guest led 24-22 at the end of the first.

The next half proved to be a nail-biter, with both teams showing off their defensive skills. Proving to be a close one, yet again, they tied it up with 7 minutes remaining at 36 points a piece.

Ultimately, Northern Bounce Red bounced ahead to win this close one with a final score of 49-43 over Northwest Basketball.

Northern Bounce White vs Dynamite U15 Red

Dynamite U15 played with ease, hitting vital treys and holding their opponents to less points in both halves of the game.

Though Northern Bounce White made a tremendous effort in the second, Dynamite Red took the W on this one with a final score of 58-42.

“It feels really good to win Player of the Game at a level like this because I’m putting in work and it’s paying off,” said Dynamite standout # 13 Aaron Ungprasert. “We played really good defense and were able to get in the other team’s head.”

Burnaby Knights vs Shooting Stars

The Shooting Stars simply ran at the Burnaby Knights to start, burning them in transition early and often. A 40-16 halftime lead was too much to overcome for the Burnaby Knights, and it wasn’t helped by a 11-2 run from the Shooting Stars to start the second half.

“We pushed the intensity the whole time” said the Shooting Star’s Sahal Sidhu on how his team won this game. “Our coach is really welcoming and got us playing together really well.”

Rock Elite vs Edmonton Stormhawks

Two evenly matched teams faced off in this one, as it was just a one point game halfway through the first half. The Rock, coming from NewFoundland, were certainly not going to go down without a fight. They did a better job in the second half using their superior size advantage, and ended up winning this one 76-63

“We worked as hard as we could, we hustled, we just stuck with what we practiced” said Russell Noseworthy of Rock Elite afterwards.

Dynamite U15 vs Doggpound Hoops

Doggpound came into this game with a lot of bite, staking an early seven point lead. They ran the floor extremely, and if they missed they could easily clean it up off the glass. Doggpound led 40-29 after the first half, but the Dynamite clawed their way back into it. A deep three from the Doggpound seemed to give them a newfound confidence, as they dominated the rest of the way and won 78-62.

“We doing really good at the start” said the Doggpound’s Jadon Cook. “But near the end we were a bit off.”

Isaac Simon of the Doggpound had 24 points.

4:15pm Games

Northern Bounce U16 vs Bata Sports

Northern Bounce were first to score with a 4-0 run to start the game. Bata Sports hit right back to take a temporary lead. This back-and-forth matchup saw a lot of ball movement paired with exceptional boards, forcing a few turnovers on both sides.

Just before the end of the first, two players got into a bit of tiff that nearly resulted in a technical. But after calming down, Northern Bounce flipped the switch and came back to lead 32-28 heading into the second.

The second half was a doozy! Bata Sports hit a splashy 3 to take the lead with just 10 minutes to go. But Bounce did their thing and smacked back with 2 to come ahead, yet again. After clutching up on D and scoring crucial FGs, Northern Bounce were victorious; the final score being 62-52.

# 2 Jackson Kuc says he’s looking forward to competing in more games throughout the tourney and was pumped on the close win.

“We rebounded and got defensive shots well and we shot the ball well in this game.”

Shooting Stars U16 vs Wolfpack

Both teams struggled to get through defenders early on, with Wolfpack holding only a slight 6-4 lead over the Shooting Stars in the first five minutes.

As the half continued, each team continued to kill it on D, with minimal points allowed before the end of the half. Wolfpack led by just 1 point, 16-15 over Shooting Stars.

The Wolfpack continued to pressure their opponent and play an offensively sound first chunk of the second. With notable communication, they went on a 9-0 run before Shooting Stars could try to catch up. It was too little too late for them, though. Wolfpack came out on top with a final score of 53-43.

“I think we executed our plays well, tightened up on defense,” said # 23 Patrick Yatco. “I think that’s the key to why we won.”

Yatco had a whopping 20 points for the Pack.

Calgary Storm U17 vs StormHawks - Liboy

Calgary storm went for a 13-0 run to start the first before the StormHawks could put up a couple of their own. 22-3 for Calgary with just 10 minutes to go. The first half definitely seemed to be a foretelling of what was to come in the next half, with the Calgary Storm ahead significantly.

Much of the rest of the game followed suit, with the Storm thundering down the court and striking their opponents like lightning.

In the end, the Calgary Storm won 67-27 over the StormHawks.

StormHawks vs Salmon Arm Synergy

The team from Salmon Arm, BC played great transition offence in the first half, making the Stormhawks pay for every half court turnover. The Stormhawks showed some fight once play resumed, but Salmon Arm played tough defence and shut the door the rest of the way. The BC team took this one over the team from Alberta 79-46.

“We just wanted to win more than they did” explained Salmon Arm’s Steven Hardy after his team’s victory. “We got our butts in gear and did it.”

Alton Neid had 18 points for the Synergy.

Dynamite vs Next Gen

Next Gen battled back from a four point first half deficit to take a eight lead heading into the second half. In the second half Next Gen extended their lead even further, thanks to some great ball movement that saw them get high quality chance after chance. Next Gen took this one 71-42.

“We were able to come through, work together, and get the dub” said Next Gen’s Cole Bordeleau. Can’t get a better summary than that.

5:30pm Games

DoggPound Hoops vs Burnaby Knights

DoggPound Hoops went for a 5-0 run before Burnaby could find the hoop. This evenly matched game showcased both teams laying it all out on the floor. Eventually, DoggPound went on a point bender, ending the first half by 35-20 over the Burnaby Knights.

The second half saw the Knights give it their absolute all. They went on a 7-point run, crushing in a few before DoggPound could bite back. And once those Doggs sunk their teeth into their opponent, there was no coming back. They defeated Burnaby with a final score of 64-38.

DoggPound legend # 6 I. Simon made 9 unreal layups, leading his team with 18 points.

Dynamite U15 Black vs Shooting Stars

Dynamite went off with a BOOM! to start the first half, taking a hefty 14-3 lead over the Shooting Stars, who unlike their name, could not seem to shoot early on. After 12 minutes of play, Dynamite U15 Black (who ironically donned red jerseys in this game) led 24-12 over the Stars.

But do not count those Shooting Stars out just yet! They locked it up on D and came back to tie it all at 24 with under 4 minutes to go.

With a few easy layups on both sides, the Stars took over on the scoreboard 29-28 heading into the second.

Dynamite lit up the court in the first few minutes, going for a 11-0 run before the Stars finally shot a vital 3. With points flying onto the board on both sides, this high-scoring game went to Dynamite, who defeated the Shooting Stars by a final score of 66-58.

Player of the Game Rourke MacDonald had this to say about Dynamite’s epic victory:

“When we had the lead and [Shooting Stars] came back, I think we lost a lot of intensity. But we sort of came together as a team and really weak points in their defense, and that allowed us to take the lead and the defense that we played allowed us to keep the lead.”

MacDonald scored 25 points for the Dynamite.

Northwest Basketball (Spartans) vs Dynamite U14

Northwest Basketball, aka the Spartans, battled it out to lead 29-25 over Dynamite U14 after the first half. The game continued to go in their favour, with a dominant lead in the second that seemed too far out of reach for Dynamite to catch.

The Spartans slayed their competition with a final score of 65-55.

#9 Bradley Wharton had an incredible 18 points for his team.

Red Rush vs Spotters

It was 15-10 halfway through the first and stayed close throughout the first half. Both teams traded threes, and neither team could get an extended run going to separate themselves. The second half was the definition of a nail-biter, as both teams scored quickly on the fast break to make it one a classic.

Red Rush had a six point lead early in the second half, but the Spotter tied it up once again at 40. After the Red Rush had scored five straight to take the lead back, that would be enough — they took it 72-55.

“It was good” said the Red Rush’s Gabriel Bergeron on his team’s win. “We struggled a bit in the beginning but we caught a rhythm, played as a team, and came out with the victory.”

GrassRoots Elite vs Northern Bounce

It was a near capacity crowd to see GrassRoots strut their stuff against Northern Bounce. As expected, GrassRoots turned up the pressure on Northern Bounce — the team from Ontario got plenty of buckets off their full court press. It was another huge win for GrassRoots, but the pro Northern Bounce crowd mad plenty of noise when their team scored some points.

“We pulled off the victory by playing hard defence” said Elijah Fisher of GrassRoots afterwards. “We brought pressure to them because we thought they expected that, they went hard and we beat them by 100.”

Fisher had 39 points in his team’s win.

MacHoops vs NexGen

NexGen managed to score 36 points in the first half due to some great ball movement on the fast break. The second half saw NextGen continue to punish them on the fast break, eventually taking this one 65-53.

“We played pretty good defence” said NexGen’s AJ Tshilombo. Offensively I think we need to work on that a little bit but because we worked well as a team we got the win.”

6:45pm Games

StormHawks vs Northern Bounce White

Northern Bounce White sprung ahead early in the first, leading by at least double over the StormHawks with just under 11 minutes to go. Feeling the pressure to find their stride, the Hawks kept it a close game near the end of the half. Bounce led just 25-24.

In the second, Northern Bounce added just 4 points on the board before the StormHawks flew past them to take the lead for the first time. And they did not back down! They continued to own in the paint, taking a solid 7-point lead with just under 8 minutes remaining.

This game started off with most fans (and even players) thinking that Northern Bounce would take the W. However, with a little bit of faith and a whole lot of determination on both ends of the court, the StormHawks came back from a near loss to win 55-41 over Bounce.

Dynamite U15 Red vs Rock Elite

Rock Elite went full-on psycho in the first, staying ahead of Dynamite by at least 10 points and ending the half off 35-24.

Elite kept on rockin’ the court, holding the lead for the duration of the game. Though Dynamite played a mean D to keep the deficit somewhat within reach, Rock Elite was able to claim their final win of the day. They defeated Dynamite U15 Red 63-50.

The little team from Newfoundland earned it, naming Russ Noseworthy their Player of the Game.

“It feels good. I’ve worked hard for this and it feels great to get recognition for it,” he said. “[Looking forward to] just playing basketball and having fun.”

StormHawks vs Northern Bounce

Northern Bounce had an amazing first half, scoring 52 points in the opening frame alone. In the second half, the StormHawks had no answer for Northern Bounce’s fast break offence. Although the Edmonton based had some great individual efforts, they couldn’t put it all together consistently enough to go on a big run.

“Our chemistry has built a lot” said Saagar Sherll after his team’s victory on what he and his teammates are looking forward to. “We just had to work on the press and honestly if we can build our chemistry more, we’ll be an unstoppable team.”

CBA vs Shooting Stars

CBA had no trouble beating the Shooting Stars, as they would eventually win 91-32. After a 49-14 first half, CBA’s size and man advantage on the bench just wore the Shooting Stars down to the point where they didn’t trouble CBA.

“I think just some stronger competition” said CBA’s Jack Wuotila — who had 22 points — on what he’s excited for come day 2. “Seeing what our pool is like and hopefully two more wins.”

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