Morning Star Staff
Vernon Panthers found out what it takes to play some of B.C.’s best high school senior girls basketball teams.
The Panthers went 0-3 at the Best of the West tournament in Kelowna, losing the three contests by an average of just eight points.
“This is a very competitive tournament as all of the teams are provincially ranked, with nobody ranked lower than fifth in the single-, double- or triple-A girls basketball rankings,” said Panthers co-coach John Keeley.
“As would be expected, the three games were hard-fought, and although we lost all three of the games we played, the girls learned a lot about what it takes to win at this level.”
The Panthers opened Friday afternoon by taking on the No. 1-ranked AA team in B.C., the Duchess Park Condors of Prince George, who beat VSS by 16 two weeks ago in Kamloops.
While VSS led by three early in the fourth quarter, the Condors rallied for a 51-43 victory.
Jordan Korol led the Panthers with 11 points, Anna Rice and Karley Fugel had eight each and Jordan Cullum chipped in seven. Game star was Megan Prentice, who did a great job slowing down the Condors’ point guard.
The Cats faced fourth-ranked AAA Riverside Rapids of Port Coquitlam Saturday morning, losing 63-59. The game was tied at the half.
No scoring was available for this game, but Keeley praised the effort of game star Cullum, who had a strong game.
VSS finished the tourney two hours later against the AAA fifth-ranked MEI Eagles of Abbotsford, never able to get on track and dropping a 73-62 decision.
“All of the girls played well and all but one got on the score sheet,” said Keeley.
Game star Korol led the attack with 16 points, Cullum had 10 while Jessica Melvin and Rice had nine each.
Fulton Maroons also had a winless weekend at the Princess Margaret senior girls tournament in Penticton, opening with a 61-24 loss Friday to Kelowna’s Okanagan Mission Huskies.
“We played well against a talented and tenacious Okanagan Mission for a quarter,” said Fulton head coach Mike Scheller. “The score was 23-17 at the end of the first. Then, someone covered the basket and we just could not score.”
Naz Wurz led the Maroons with eight points while Brittany Skrenek had six. Sam Orr was named player of the game for Fulton, who dropped to the consolation side Saturday morning and fell 44-37 to the George Elliot Dominoes of Lake Country.
AJ Jacura had 15 for the Maroons, Lee Richardson chipped in nine and player of the game Erin Sakamoto contributed eight points.
Fulton finished the tournament with a 47-36 loss to the JL Crowe Hawks of Trail.
Jacura had eight points, Skrenek seven and Cherish Ayers dropped in five points for Fulton.
“This was a game where we played all 12 players equally,” said Scheller. “The girls worked hard and produced some solid moments. AJ had a great tourney for us, and she worked hard every match.”
Shelby Hughes was player of the game for Fulton, who host the Panthers in league play at 6:30 p.m.