Another year of Totem has come to an end in Port Alberni, and the Alberni District Secondary School (ADSS) senior boys basketball team has brought home the championship trophy.
The senior boys capped off the 67th year of Totem with a 59-51 victory against the defending champions Carihi Secondary School on Saturday, Jan. 7. It was the first-ever Totem win for coach Craig Brooks, who has been coaching the ADSS senior boys for around eight years. Brooks said the team has been overlooked for the past few years, and they are ready to prove the rest of the Island wrong.
“Other teams think we’re the easy matchup,” said Brooks. “We’re fired up—we want to prove a point.”
The home team took a lead early in the first quarter and held that lead until the end of the third, when Carihi managed to knot the score at 36-36. Brooks says his team took some “key” timeouts in the second half of the game to slow things down and pull off the win. Players of the game were Dom Wynans for Port Alberni and Ryan Baikie for Carihi.
“One of the lessons we’ve learned is trying to control our emotions,” said Brooks. “Not letting the highs get too high or the lows get too low.”
This is the second year in a row that a Port Alberni team has won Totem. Last year, the ADSS girls won the Totem championship, and also made it to provincials. Brooks says the senior boys still have more to prove.
“We haven’t peaked yet,” he said. “There’s still more to come. [This team] deserves to be ranked provincially.”
The ADSS girls placed third in the tournament, picking up a 55-44 win against Nanaimo District Secondary School on Saturday evening. Players of the game were Natalie Clappis for Alberni and Aria Reid for Nanaimo.
At the end of the night, Jayden Blake was named the winner of the Totem Spirit competition.
Athletic director Mike Roberts was at a loss for words at the end of another successful Totem tournament. He attributes the success of the tournament every year to the community support it receives.
“This can’t happen without so many people that help us,” he said.
Boys Totem Champion: Port Alberni
Boys MVP: Ty Cyr (Alberni)
Boys All-Star Team: Liam St. Onge (Alberni), Dominic Wynans (Alberni), Zach Aurameko (Carihi), Marco Cvitanovic (Reynolds), Calum Carmichael (Stelly’s).
Boys Most Sportsmanlike Team: Carihi
Girls Totem Champion: Belmont
Girls MVP: Nicola Spaven (Belmont)
Girls All-Star Team: Mikaela Eadie (Belmont), Joaleah Tupas-Singh (PCS), Jennifer Taylor (Alberni), Abi Ellison (PCS), Avery Henderson (NDSS).
Totem Spirit Winner: Jayden Blake