Marauders to host Air Show Tournament

The Pitt Meadows Marauders senior boys have been playing their best basketball of the season, just in time to host their ...

Pitt Meadows Marauder Kenly Hoeg drives to the basket in his Grade 8 team’s first win of the season against the Garibaldi Rebels on Thursday.

Pitt Meadows Marauder Kenly Hoeg drives to the basket in his Grade 8 team’s first win of the season against the Garibaldi Rebels on Thursday.

The Pitt Meadows Marauders senior boys have been playing their best basketball of the season, just in time to host their annual Air Show Tournament this weekend.

“We played the best we’ve ever played,” coach Rich Goulet said after his team’s performance at the Chancellor Tournament at Saint Thomas More in Burnaby over the weekend.

It is a rebuilding year for the Marauders, and they have dropped down to triple A, instead of playing on the elite quadruple A circuit.

They started the STM tournament with a 52-42 win over the Sutherland Sabres of North Vancouver.  Mandeep Basra put up 15 points and 10 rebounds.

“He has been on a run that has come out of nowhere,” Goulet said of his six-foot-one centre. Ryan Severinski was another leader, and had nine points.

That advanced the Marauders to their second-round opponent, the host STM Knights, where they upset a team that has been ranked fourth in the province on the triple A circuit, by a score of 62-58.

“We played unbelievably well – probably the game of their lives,” said Goulet. “We were moving the ball better, playing better defence … we could do no wrong.”

Basra put up 18 points to lead the scoring and Severinski had 14.

Mitchell Antoniak’s great perimeter shooting kept his team in the game, as he nailed four treys and put up 13 points.

Next up came the G.W. Graham Grizzlies – a solid team out of Chilliwack. They are the fourth-ranked team in double A, and beat Goulet’s group 75-63 to end their tournament championship aspirations.

Basra had a career high 28 points and 10 boards, while Antoniak scored 11.

After that letdown, the playing in their fourth game in five days, the Marauders lost their last game of the Chancellor by a score of 77-40 to the South Kamloops Titans – another team in the provincial rankings, with a triple A honourable mention.

Basra scored 14 and Antoniak eight.

Last Tuesday night, before the tournament, the Marauders beat New Westminister 60-50 in an exhibition game.

So, they have been playing good ball as they host the Air Show.

“We’re in a good place,” said Goulet. “The kids are happy with themselves – they’ve shown they can play.”

The tournament will include some tough competition, including the Charles Hays Rainmakers out of Prince Rupert, who are ranked seventh in triple A, the Nanaimo District Islanders, who are an honourable mention. There are also quad A teams, including Mt. Boucherie and Heritage Woods, and the top-ranked team in double A, the Collingwood Cavaliers out of West Vancouver.

Pitt Meadows will open the tournament at noon on Friday, in a game to be played in front of a huge crowd from the school.