The Senior Girls Basketball team in action

Senior Girls Basketball

The SMUS Senior Girls Basketball team hosted the Vancouver Island AAA Championships this past weekend, capturing the title with three straight victories.

Opening-round action pitted the Blue Jags against the North Island No. 4 seed, Carihi of Campbell River. Jumping out to an early lead, the Blue Jags focused on offensive sets and solid team defence. Four Blue Jags managed 20 points or better – Charlie Anderson led the way with 23 points, Avery Geddes added 21, and Olivia Pickering and Cate Pontefract each had career-high games, scoring 20 points apiece. Pontefract was honoured with player of the game status, as she showcased some excellent footwork and finishing in the post. The final score was 96-16 for the Blue Jags.

The semifinal opponent for SMUS was the Alberni Armada. Once again, the Blue Jags' pace of play and defensive intensity proved too much for Alberni as the hosts squad won 70-24. Geddes led all scorers with 23 points and Anderson added 11. Liv Vincent was named the player of the game for SMUS as she finished with seven points, seven rebounds and two blocks.

The win set the stage for another clash with the Reynolds Roadrunners, the Blue Jags’ cross-town rivals and currently the fifth-ranked team in BC.

The Blue Jags jumped out to an early lead in the final with Alex Motherwell scoring the opening eight points. Some hot shooting stretched the SMUS lead to 22-9 after the first quarter. Once again, the Blue Jags’ defensive intensity proved too much for the Roadrunners, as they struggled to get going offensively.

Motherwell played with great intensity at both ends of the court, finishing with 14 points and seven rebounds and earning player of the game honours. Geddes led all scorers with 28 points and Anderson added 13. SMUS went on to a 69-35 win.

This is the second consecutive AAA Island title for the Blue Jags. Anderson and Vincent were named to the Island tournament all-star team. Maddy Albert of SMUS was recognized for her outstanding defence and rebounding all tournament long with the Island defensive MVP award. Geddes, the Blue Jags’ Grade 11 point guard, was named Island tournament MVP, averaging 24 points per game over the three days.

The Blue Jags, ranked No. 2 in the province, now set their sights on the AAA BC Championship tournament scheduled for February 28 to March 2 in Langley.

Senior Boys Basketball

The SMUS Senior Boys have been practising diligently for most of the last two weeks, preparing for the Vancouver Island AA Championship tournament that begins this Thursday at Brentwood College.
The Blue Jags, ranked No. 6 among BC AA teams, will face the Gulf Islands Scorpions in their opening-round game on Thursday at 5:30 pm. The winner of that game will play the winner of host Brentwood College and either St. Andrew’s or Ladysmith, who will meet in a challenge game earlier in the week for the final Island berth.

Brentwood is ranked fifth among BC AA teams while Lambrick Park is ranked third. Nanaimo’s John Barsby, a provincial Honourable Mention, also figures to be in the hunt for one of the three Island berths available in the BC AA Championship tournament which begins March 6 at the Langley Events Centre.

“We’ve been working hard during this practice window to prepare specifically for our matchups at the Island tournament,” says SMUS Head Coach Reagan Daly. “We are healthy and ready to compete for a provincial berth.”

Junior Girls Basketball

The Junior Girls Basketball team qualified for this week’s BC Championship tournament by winning three of its four games to finish third in the Vancouver Island Junior tournament that concluded Saturday at Courtenay’s Mark Isfeld Secondary.

The Blue Jags opened the Island tournament with an all-around solid team effort in a 50-18 decision over Nanaimo’s Dover Bay, the North’s No. 2 seed. Indigo Edgington led the way with 18 points and was named player of the game while teammate Mya Beare added 16.

SMUS then lost a 44-40 heartbreaker to the host Isfeld Ice in Friday’s semifinal round. “We played a great game of basketball and were in control for most of the game,” says Head Coach Tina Lum. Elspeth Rodger scored 19 points in the loss and was named player of the game for SMUS while Edgington added 12.

The semifinal defeat sent the Blue Jags to the consolation side of the tournament, where they needed back-to-back wins in order to earn the third and final Island berth in the BC tournament.

After falling behind 19-10 at the half, SMUS rallied over the final two quarters to beat Royal Bay 39-36 in its first game of the day. Rodger was again the Blue Jags’ scoring leader with 13 points while Edgington had 12 and was selected player of the game.

Needing one more win to qualify for the provincial tournament, the Junior Jags came up big, beating Courtenay’s GP Vanier 36-21 in their final game of the Island tournament. Rodger had 15 points to lead the Blue Jags in scoring while Edgington added 11 and teammate Crystal Cai was named the SMUS player of the game. Rodger and Edgington were selected to the Island tournament’s second all-star team.

The Blue Jags are seeded 19th for the BC tournament and will meet Crofton House (No. 14) in their tournament opener this coming Friday at 3 pm at Surrey’s Pacific Academy.

Junior Boys Basketball

The SMUS Junior Boys Basketball team was also successful in its quest for a spot in the 32-team BC Junior Boys Championship tournament that begins this coming Saturday at the Langley Events Centre.

The Junior Jags won three of their four games in the Vancouver Island tournament, including two of their best performances of the season on the final day at SMUS to both qualify for the BC berth and earn third-place Island honours.

SMUS began the Island tournament with a 40-25 win over Wellington on Thursday despite struggling mightily to make shots. Guard Dani Pelyhe led the Blue Jags with 16 points in the win and earned player of the game honours.

Due to a fixed-format draw that differs depending on what region of the Island is hosting the tournament, the provincially ninth-ranked Blue Jags had to face host and BC No. 2-ranked Oak Bay in a semifinal on Friday. SMUS started slowly in that game, again struggling to score and falling behind by 13 points at the half. However, the Blue Jags came out of the locker room with renewed defensive purpose, holding the Bays scoreless in the entire third quarter to draw to within one point, at 27-26 heading into the final eight minutes.

Despite having possession of the ball or free throws on a handful of occasions and thus multiple opportunities to take the lead, it was the Bays who scored the first eight points of the final quarter for an eventual 45-31 win. Will Zielinski was a standout for SMUS defensively in the game and also scored nine points to earn player of the game recognition while Eliot Tait also added nine points and was strong on the boards.

SMUS showed tremendous resilience on Saturday, facing elimination and the potential end of its season against Dover Bay, the North Island’s top seed. The Blue Jags got out to an early lead and then withstood a couple of rallies from the Dolphins before eventually pulling away for a 64-38 win. Pelyhe had 16 points, including a dagger three-pointer at the buzzer to give SMUS a 28-21 halftime lead. Zielinski was again strong with 11 points and a number of steals while Jaiden Daniels scored 10 and combined with Tait and Quinn McMeekin to control the boards. Henry Williamson had eight points, including two key first-half threes, and Parker Sheehan did a fine defensive job on Dover’s star guard. Daniels was selected as the SMUS player of the game.

The Blue Jags wrapped up the Island tournament with a convincing 79-50 win over Mark Isfeld in the third-place game as Pelyhe exploded for 39 points – including 28 in the first half – to earn his second player of the game award. Following the tournament, Pelyhe was selected to the Island Championship all-star team.
The Blue Jags now await word on where they will be seeded for the BC tournament and who they will face in Saturday’s opening round at the LEC.

Grade 9 Boys Basketball

The Grade 9 Boys Basketball team completed its season by finishing third overall in the city. Unfortunately, this was not enough to qualify the Blue Jags for the Vancouver Island tournament.

SMUS struggled in the city semifinal at Royal Bay, unable to recover from a poor start. However, the Blue Jags, led on the day by Josh Leung, Kieran MacKay and Ming Tsang, then defeated Esquimalt 37-34 in an exciting bronze-medal match.


Twenty SMUS Squash team members competed in the Pacific North West Junior Championships held in Victoria over the past weekend, highlighted by Anderson Brown’s third-place finish in the Boys U17 Division.

Ten Senior School students, seven Middle School athletes and three Junior School players from SMUS took part in the event which included athletes from across Canada in all divisions.

Brown made it to the Boys U17 semifinals without dropping a single game, before falling to the No. 1 seed in four games (11-6, 11-5, 4-11, 11-9). Brown won his third-place match 3-0.

SMUS standout Lucas Quon earned a seventh-place finish in the Boys U19 Division. Quon lost in the quarter-finals to the No. 1-ranked player in Canada who was also the eventual tournament winner. Quon fought hard in that match, almost taking the second game, losing 11-3, 12-10, 11-8.

Other notable SMUS finishes included: Roshan Pathak (11th, Boys U17); 
Max Arndt (11th, Boys U15); Kieran MacKay (13th, Boys U15); Elliot Judson (2nd, Tier 1 Silver) and Maia Hoeschmann (3rd ,Tier 1 Silver).

SMUS will host the second SMUS Silver Series of the year on March 8 and 9 before the school’s A and B teams head to Vancouver for the BC Junior Closed (provincials), March 15 to 17.

January SMUS Athletes of the Month

Senior Girls Basketball player Charlie Anderson and SMUS Squash athlete Lucas Quon were honoured recently as the SMUS Athletes of the Month for January.

Anderson, a Grade 11 guard who can finish at the rim and hit the three, led the Blue Jags to a 10-1 record in January and earned MVP honours at the Victoria City Police Tournament. She is averaging 18.8 points and 7.4 rebounds this season and is a big reason the Blue Jags have been at or near the top of the BC AAA rankings all year.

Quon, a Grade 12 student, is described by SMUS Head Coach Grace Thomas as a leader who brings enthusiasm and a strong work ethic to every practice. He was selected as one of four players to represent Canada at the British Junior Open last month in Birmingham, where he won four of six matches and beat No.1-ranked players from Denmark, Slovakia and England.