It was supposed to be a battle for the regional title. In the end it was little more than a lopsided scrimmage.
The L.V. Rogers Bombers can call themselves the kings of the Kootenay after the senior boys basketball squad defeated Trail’s JL Crowe Hawks 69-46 on Wednesday night in the Kootenay AAA Championship.
The game was never close as the Nelson squad hit the hardwood flying and took a commanding 21-11 lead after the first quarter and then extended that lead to 23 points, 44-21 at the half.
“We started really, really well, I thought,” said Ross Naka, assistant coach of the Bombers.
“I thought we came out strong and we were all over them early.”
With the game almost out of reach at the half, the Bombers players seemed to relax the intensity and slow down the pace of the game. A move that didn’t sit well with the coaching staff.
“For whatever reason it really tapered off in the second half,” said Naka.
“We obviously severely underscored compared to what we did in the first half. You don’t like seeing that and it’s obviously something we want to work on.”
But that was all the fault Naka could find in his squad’s performance.
Bjorn Morris led the team in scoring with 16 points, followed by Josh Matosevic with 15 points and Isaiah Kingdon with 14.
“Our guys who started were fantastic. Bjorn played awesome. Another guy in the first half that I thought was huge for us, who helped separate us from them was Josh Matosevic. He scored 11 points in the second quarter and he’s a Grade 10 kid,” said Naka.
Youth is something the Bombers have in abundance, making the future quite bright for the Nelson squad.
“We are not losing a lot of guys next year,” said Naka, pointing to Matosevic as an example.
“Josh is a young up-and-comer and we are always pressuring him to shoot the ball more, to take some more shots and he did that tonight. It was great to see.”
The victory and the Kootenay title give the Bombers the right to represent the region at the Provincial tournament in Langley in mid-March.