Sunday, February 6, 2011

Basketball-intensive week!

I just got home from the "Felins" basketball tournament in Repentigny. It has been a basketball-intensive week. Last Wednesday, we played a regular-season game against Joseph-François-Perreault and, despite a somewhat lackluster performance, managed a win, bringing our record to 8 and 3. Our final regular-season game will take place on February 19th against the undefeated first place team. Even if we don't win, we should finish in a position where we will make the playoffs. I realized that, although we had a bunch of games coming up in the same week, the one I had been nervous about was the JFP game. After that win, I was not too worried about the tournament, as the result did not count in our regular season.

As for the tournament, I was interested to see how we would measure up against AA-level teams from all around the province. There were 16 teams in our age category, so the setup was easy: if you lost the first game, you would be relegated to fighting it out for a position between 9th and 16th. Our first game was Friday night against Collège l'Assomption. I benefited from the help of Darlington, the coach of one of the city teams who has coached several of my girls before. The girls played a strong game. They were down by 4 at half, but thanks to a modified full court press (3 girls up, 2 back), they shut down the opposing team in the second half and pulled off a 7-point win.

Our second game on Saturday did not go as well. We were up against Langevin, a very tall and well-organised team and the pressure defense did not faze them. Alex was on our bench and pointed out that I was yelling at the girls a lot. It's hard to figure out when you are yelling so they can hear you out on the Court and when you are yelling because you're angry. Her comment made me think about what I say and how I say it. We ended up losing by our largest ever deficit, by a score of 47-18. Our defense was not great, but even if we had had a great game, I do not think we would have won. As a result of the loss, we were no longer in the running for the tournament win.

For our third game on Sunday, I told the girls to just go out there and have fun, as the result did not matter. We were playing against Roger-Comtois. We reverted to our old-fashioned man-to-man defense and the other team was unable to score very often and we gradually eked out a lead in a low-scoring game. I tried to keep things light and keep my comments positive. The girls looked like they were having more fun and played a solid game. We ended up winning 31-20 to end the tournament on a high note. Two wins in three games was not too shabby. Also, I just noticed online that Langevin went on to win the whole tournament, so it's not like we lost to a lousy team.

Here is a table showing the tournament results (our team is Reine-Marie):

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I am tired, but quite satisfied with the results. I have to thank Alex for joining me for the whole weekend and helping me manage the team. Thanks Alex!

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