With the senior boys basketball team’s provincial title win last Saturday, Mission secondary might have set history, according to one of its coaches.
The Roadrunners fought their way to the finals in Kamloops, and closed down their opponents from Burnaby’s St. Thomas More 70-56, which garnered MSS its first AA basketball championship since 1954.
But, said MSS principal and co-coach Jim Pearce, after checking with B.C. School Sports, there appears to be no record of any high school winning a provincial football and basketball title in the same year.
“It’s been 12 years of us building a strong program,” he said, noting the weekend win was satisfying for himself and co-coach Danny Jakobs. “We got ‘er done.”
The provincial competition started for Mission last Wednesday, and the Seventh Avenue school was off to a strong start, knocking out LV Rogers in a decisive fashion, 65-38.
The next game wasn’t so easy.
Mission was up against Duchess Park and that team came out on fire, said Pearce, limiting MSS’ scoring chances and tying up their attackers.
“In the second half it was definitely our defense that kept us in it.”
The Roadrunners started to hit their own stride and pushed to a 66-60 win, putting them into the semi-finals against Brentwood.
“We were really struggling to find the hoop” early on, said Pearce, and MSS fell behind 31-23 at the half. The team rallied and in the third quarter went on a 24-6 scoring run which helped them pull ahead for the 53-43 victory.
The final against STM was going to be a war.
“We thought we were well matched and it was going to be a contest of who could battle each other mentally,” said Pearce.
The Knights surprised MSS and came out playing zone, instead of man defence, but a string of three-pointers from Luc Comeau allowed Mission to be slightly ahead 31-30 at the half.
“Our best quarter is always the third,” Pearce said, and he and Jakobs reminded the players of that fact during halftime.
The pep talk worked.
“We locked them down,” he said.
The Roadrunners went on a 20-4 scoring spate and halfway through the fourth, Pearce said STM looked demoralized.
MSS carried its momentum forward to a 70-56 win.
• Luke Morris: tournament’s most valuable player; first team all-star.
• Rhys Parry: first team all-star.
• Luc Comeau: Defensive player of the tournament; second team all-star.