Boys SPIRIT GAME: Carson Graham vs. Archbishop Macdonald (AB)
Written by: Jeff McCutcheon, Handsworth Grad 2006
After a touching video dedication to Quinn Keast the “No Regrets” tournament is off! Huge thanks to Archbishop Macdonald for making the trip out from Alberta to take on the home court Carson Eagles. Archbishop Macdonald are sporting a Minnesota Vikings purple and gold while the Eagles are in White and Red with some unbelievable coifs upstairs.
It’s a fast paced start in the first quarter with both teams pushing the pace. Visiting team #15 Reid Piekema has found himself with a couple fast breaks and finished the first one with a nice little slam to silence the crowd. Eagles #5 Jade Duque has other plans though as he nails multiple clutch shots to keep the locals vocal. The first quarter ends with Carson up 23-17.
To start the second quarter Macdonald comes out with a punishing full court press. Eagles coach Larry Donohoe is forced to burn an early timeout to plan a way of beating this press. After the timeout the next two possessions by the Eagles result in turnovers as well. If they can’t find a way around this it will be a major turning point in the game. After a 10-0 run by the visitors the Eagles have brought on their “all hair” lineup. The 4 of them sport near identical flows that myself and Pert Plus commercials would be jealous of. These young gentlemen do their best to hold down their house but it’s clear this is going to be a battle to the end. After the first half we have a tie game at 44 - 44. Huge props to the visitors for a near perfect second quarter and overcoming a 13 point deficit at one point.
Here we go! Fresh start, 20 minutes will decide this one. Carson’s Aamir Rajwani gets a couple offensive boards, one nearly putting him in the Science class next door but it isn’t enough to spark the Eagles. Consistently they have been missing their shots to start the third and Macdonald has been making theirs. With the Eagles down by 4 at home, Coach Donohoe’s face is turning more and more Carson Red. Carson’s #2 Kinneth Balucos has had enough. He gets 7 points for his squad in a variety of manners showing his versatility all over the floor in the past couple minutes. Eagles #7 Tyler Tymm-Nash finishes off the run with a steal and layup to ignite the crowd and put his team up 65-54 at the end of the third quarter. That was a huge run by the North Vancouver school and they hope it will be enough. As we’ve seen before though Archbishop Macdonald is not going to give it to them easily.
After multiple offensive boards Carson takes nearly two minutes off the clock on a single possession and finishes it off with a deuce which is exactly what the doctor ordered in the 4th quarter. Down by 24 Archbishop Macdonald’s #13 Keenan Rowein comes up with the play of the game. He went up huge for a board, fought off a foul and drained the bucket for an “And 1” while falling to his back. That play alone sums up the heart of this visiting team. The game will end 86 - 61 but don’t let the scoreboard fool you. Alberta’s team was up in the third quarter and no one can say they didn’t fight or want it as badly. Thanks again Archbishop Macdonald for making the trip and congratulations to the hometown Carson Eagles on a big win to start the tourney.
Good luck to both teams in their next games.
Player of the game:
Carson: Jade Duque
Archbishop: Reid Piekema