Defence sparks Palliser Heights to elementary hoops title

Matthew Gourlie
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The Palliser Heights Huskies defence came through in the clutch Tuesday night.

The Palliser Heights Huskies boys basketball elementary Tier I champions include Gavin Daviduk, back left, Ashton Woodley, coach Jonathan Mclean, Hayden Wiebe, Christian Banias-Watson, middle left, Ethan Watt, Carter Fehr, Jackson Woloschuk, Erduan Huseini, Payton Chow, front left, and Jeff Kowalchuk.

The Huskies defence kept the Sunningdale Grizzlies off of the scoreboard in the final half of the fourth quarter as the Huskies earned a 40-33 win over Sunnindale in the Prairie South elementary boys Tier I basketball final at Central.

"We had tight games all year with them, so we knew it was going to be a close game," said Palliser Heights coach Jonathan Mclean.

The Huskies took a two-point lead into the fourth quarter and it remained a two-point game until Payton Chow stole a ball and went in for a lay-up with two minutes left to extend the Huskies lead to four. Jackson Woloschuk hit a free throw and Chow sank two more free throws as the Huskies iced the game from the charity stripe.

"Our leaders stepped up to the plate. We made a few key baskets when we needed to and put the pressure on them at the right time. We forced some turnovers late that really made the difference in the game," said Mclean whose team shut down the Sunningdale attack in the late going. "We played a lot of tough D at the end kept them to the outside."

The Huskies had handed Sunningdale its only league loss of the year. Palliser Heights had an 8-2 record with the losses coming to Sunnindale and Caronport.

"It's always amazing how far these kids come," said Mclean. "In the last couple of weeks we've had some tournaments and we've really started to gain some momentum from that. We won a tournament a couple of weekends ago and you could see the boys gain confidence and start to play better from there."

Ashton Woodley led the Huskies with 12 points, while Jett Kowalchuk chipped in with 11 and Chow had eight.

Mathew Martineau led the Grizzlies with 13 points, while Shae Zwozdesky added nine more.

King Georgen beat Caronport 60-59 to win the Tier I bronze medal game.

Prince Arthur won the Tier II boys gold medals.

Organizations: Grizzlies

Geographic location: Prairie South, Sunningdale, Caronport

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