Falcons serve notice after sweeping Saints

Slave Lake St. Francis Falcons’ player Ezekiel Balbuena, centre, reaches for the basketball against St. Andrew’s player Jace Supernault, right. Watching the play and hoping for a rebound is Caleb Pruden. Photo courtesy of Slave Lake Lakeside Leader, Callie Hermanson.

Chris Clegg
South Peace News

The Slave Lake St. Francis Falcons are proving they are the team to beat in the upcoming Smoky River Junior High School Basketball League Boy’s Division this season.
With the league championship tournament this coming weekend in High Prairie, the Falcons geared up for the event with a home court sweep over the High Prairie St. Andrew’s Saints Feb. 13.
The Falcons won 63-42 and 65-40 to remain undefeated at 8-0 in the Boy’s East Division, while the Saints dropped to 3-6 and second place in the Boy’s West Division.
The Saints looked primed for an upset as they stormed out to an 18-8 lead in the first game. The Falcons upped their game to take a 23-22 lead the half, then increased it to 39-32 after three quarters. A big 24-point fourth quarter sealed the win.
Zeon Zanje scored 23 points to lead the Falcons. Aliyah Malaca added 12 points and Darren Tumbado 10 as three Falcons scored in double figures. Jasper Cabel, Ezekiel Balbuena, Adam Shillaker and Jei Mira each added four points. Karl Flores netted the other two points.
The Saints were led by an 11-point effort from Seb Vasquez and 10 from Ethan Smith. Jace Supernault and Brenden Kasinec each added six, Keenan Price four, Clarence Lindo three and Chad Strebchuk two.
In the second game, the Falcons led throughout by scores of 16-14 after one quarter, 28-24 at the half and 46-30 after three quarters. Like the first game, the final quarter was the Falcons’ strongest as they netted 19.
Tumbado led the way with 13 points while Zanje and Balbuena each added 10.
Vasquez again led the Saints with 10 points. Lindo and Smith each added seven, Supernault six, and Price and Thomas Basarab four points each. Coby Masson added the other two points.

Knights tame Rams

The Kinuso Knights withstood a furious fourth quarter rally from the Slave Lake Roland Michener Rams to win a 48-47 thriller Feb. 13 in Slave Lake.
The Knights [2-4] used a big third quarter to take a 36-28 lead over the Rams [3-5], then held the fort tight to win a tough road game. The Knights scored 21 points in the quarter, after netting only 15 points the first two quarters.
Balance was the key as the Knights received scoring from eight players to the Rams’ four.
Tanner Churchill led the Knights with 12 points while Hudson Williams and Hunter Williams each added seven points. Hunter Wild and Austin McLaughlin each scored six, Shaiden Chalifoux and Aiden McLaughlin four, and Morgan Saitz two.
The Rams received a game-high 25 points from Andre Joaquin, plus 14 from Jamie Gladue. The only other players to score were Porter Zutz and Kris Courtorielle, who each scored four points.

Lemay nets 29 in win

The Prairie River Raiders girl’s basketball team had no trouble winning at Donnelly G.P. Vanier Feb. 13 as they clobbered the Vipers 54-17.
Rachelle Lemay scored 29 points in the win, including 12 in the first quarter and 13 in the third quarter. Amira Sharkawi added eight points, Ava Dominguez five and Taryn Barnes-Roberts four points. Completing the scoring with two points each were Aniya Billings, Natalie Pratt, Cassidy Barry, and Shayla Gray.
Six Vipers scored but no player more than four points. Taylor Chalifoux and Amyka Deslauriers each scored four points, Danielle St. Laurent three. Completing the scoring with two-point baskets were Chloe Simmons, Trenyce Anderson-Dafoe and Averie Belleflour.
With the win, PRJH improves to 4-2 and second place in the Girl’s Division while GPV drops to 1-4.

Vipers snakebit

Leon Palisoc scored 16 points and Dave Espina added 15 as the Prairie River Raiders boy’s team tripped the Donnelly G.P. Vanier Vipers 60-36 on Feb. 13.
PRJH increased its Boy’s West Division leading record to 7-1 while GPV remained winless at 0-7.
Ryan Martin added eight points for PRJH while Layne Halcrow and Mondi Lascuna each added six points. Ethan Lalonde scored four points, Aaron Mindel and Dimitri Prince-Sawka each added two points. Ryder Rich added a free throw.
Brett Heckbert scored 22 points to lead the Vipers while Jayden Boucher added 12. The other two points were scored by Aaron Archbold.
League play ends this week with several makeup games.

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