Bulldogs, Knights win hoops titles
More than 4,000 fans were in attendance to watch the Sir Winston Churchill Bulldogs capture the B.C. high school boys 4A basketball championship title at the Langley Events Centre on Saturday night.
The final tally came in at 4,062 people, who saw the Bulldogs hold off Surrey’s Holy Cross Crusaders 67-64 to win the championship.
The Bulldogs were led by most valuable player Mindy Minhas’ 30 points.
Churchill, which was the fifth seed at the 16-team tournament, beat West Vancouver 87-79 , 75-70 over Walnut Grove, and another Surrey school, the top-ranked Tamawanis Wildcats, 68-66 in overtime. Altogether, the Bulldogs won their four games by a combined 18 points.
In Saturday's final, Holy Cross was down by three in the waning seconds, but instead of going for the potential game-tying three-pointer, drove the lane and missed the lay-up and the tip.
Minhas was the only Churchill player to hit double figures. He also had five rebounds, four steals, a blocked shot and an assist.
Holy Cross was led by Jauquin Bennett-Boire's 21 points while Jonathan Kongbo had 20. Kongbo also had a dozen rebounds and four assists and Bennett-Boire had 11 boards and seven assists.
This was the third straight year the tournament final went down to the final minute as in 2012, the Terry Fox Ravens rallied for a late 75-74 victory over the Walnut Grove Gators.
And then last March, it was the Gators prevailing 59-53 over the White Rock Christian Academy Warriors.
The LEC also hosted the boys 3A championship final on Saturday with Burnaby’s St. Thomas More Knights, ranked fourth going in, ending the Cinderella story of the No. 14 Charles Hays Rainmakers of Prince Rupert.
The Rainmakers had knocked off the No. 3 seed, the No. 6 seed and the No. 7 seed before falling 53-38 to the Knights in the championship game.
STM’s Reese Morris was named MVP. He had 16 points and 12 rebounds in the championship final.
Andrew Flett had 11 points and 10 rebounds.
The Knights defence completely shut down the Rainmakers in the second half, holding them to 14 points over the final 20 minutes.
The Rainmakers were led by Justin McChesney, who had 12 points, seven rebounds and seven blocked shots.