Chemainus Cougars couldn’t sustain the momentum after a strong start in their senior boys basketball game last Tuesday at Chemainus Secondary School against Duncan Christian School.
The Cougars twice took the lead and only trailed 16-12 after the first quarter. They continued to hang tough in the second quarter and the deficit was just 32-29 at halftime.
But DCS pulled away in the second half and held a 38-10 scoring advantage to win 70-39.
“We pushed the play in the first and second quarter with good defensive rebounding and C.J. (Loranger) draining threes,” noted assistant Graeme Arkell, filling in as head coach in the absence of Kyle Peruniak.
“The boys lost some boxout battles in the third and DCS capitalized on their opportunities. DCS played a 2-3 zone defense and it caused problems with the plays that our point guards called. Unfortunately, we didn’t have much success penetrating the paint in the third and fourth quarters and our shooting accuracy was poor.”
Loranger finished with 18 points, hitting six successful three-pointers. Will Ngenda added 14 points from seven two-point baskets.
The Cougars’ three-point shooting, accurate passes, good defensive rebounding and driving to the hoop on offence were their strengths. Arkell identified boxing out on defense, penetrating the paint against a 2-3 zone defense and a lethargic start to the third and fourth quarters as weaknesses in the game.
The Cougars were at the Nanaimo Christian School tournament the previous weekend. They lost to Timberline of Campbell River and Kwalikum, but managed to beat North Island Secondary 57-51 in overtime.
Ngenda led the way in the victory with 21 points, including a three-pointer and two free throws. Loranger contributed 11 points, with a three-pointer and four free throws in the mix.
High energy to start the game, strong man-to-man defense and driving to the hoop on offense were the Cougars’ strengths.
Discipline was a problem with too many fouls and the team had a slow start to the third quarter.
After a late three-pointer by Loranger in the fourth quarter, injured captain Matt Simpson stepped onto the floor to score seven points and sent the game into overtime with a bucket with only two seconds left on the clock.