Coach Kevin Kobitz is pleased with how the Estevan Comprehensive School (ECS) Elecs junior girls basketball team performed at their home tournament this past weekend.
The Elecs finished fourth in the tournament, dropping a 53-38 decision to the Fillmore Falcons in the third place game.
Estevan opened the tournament with a 54-51 win over Regina’s Martin Collegiate Monarchs on Friday afternoon. Jan Niverba paced the Elecs attack with 31 points.
The Elecs then lost 52-18 to the Yorkton Regional High School Raiders in their second round-robin game Friday evening. Julia Pangan had six points to lead ECS.
That left Estevan second in their pool, and they faced the second place team in the other pool, Fillmore, to see who would be third overall.
The two teams were tied 10-10 after the first quarter and Fillmore led 25-22 at half-time. But the Falcons scored the first seven points of the third quarter to take a 10-point lead, and added to the lead in the fourth quarter.
Niverba once again was the top ECS scorer with 16 points.
While the first game was likely their best of the three, Kobitz still saw improvement in several areas as the tournament progressed.
He was pleased how they boxed out opponents, and secured rebounds despite facing taller opponents. Injuries forced him to put the players on the court in five-person units.
“I had to rest a few players, so what I do is I split up the girls to design a quick flush, every two or three minutes to get them rested,” said Kobitz.
But in the first game, they were healthy, fresh and executing shots.
For many of the players, it was one of their first high school basketball tournaments.
This was their last tournament before the Christmas break. Once Christmas is finished, Kobitz would like to see the team further develop their offensive skills so that they are ready for regionals in March.
“We need to still get open, catch the ball better and pass the ball a lot better. Those are the key things that I really focus on with all my practices, is passing and catching, and those are two key elements of junior girls basketball.”
The Oxbow Black Knights defeated the Raiders 61-52 to win the tournament.
Kobitz pointed out that both Oxbow and Fillmore had senior teams with Grade 11 and 12 students, making it tough for junior teams like Estevan to compete.