The Estevan Comprehensive School (ECS) Elecs senior boys and girls basketball teams are getting ready for their annual McLeod Series showdown with the Weyburn Comprehensive School Eagles.
The McLeod Series is an annual best-of-four showdown between the schools. If the series is tied at 2-2 after the four games, then it will come down to total points to determine the winner.
Games will be played Feb. 6 in Weyburn and Feb. 13 in Estevan. Estevan will look to regain the title after Weyburn won it last year for the first time since 2014.
Senior boys coach Carmon Lindquist said the players always look forward to facing their counterparts from Weyburn in the McLeod Series, and they want to win.
“That’s right up there near the top of the things they want to accomplish,” said Lindquist.
The Elecs have defeated Weyburn in their two meetings so far this season, beating them soundly in the Elecs home tournament in January, but Lindquist pointed out Weyburn had a couple of injuries. The other meeting came during a tournament in Weyburn before Christmas.
“They have a team that has come together, and they’re playing good ball,” said Lindquist. “So it’s something where we have to be at our best and we have to play well if we want to pull off the win against Weyburn.”
Lindquist is in his first year as the coach, but he’s well-versed in the rivalry, as his daughter Tess was part of the showdown when she was at ECS.
If the senior boys are to win their share of the games, Lindquist said they will have to play their game offensively, while playing strong defence.
“We can’t let them go on the scoring runs, and when they do score, we have to respond and keep pace and have that solid discipline,” said Lindquist.
Jessie Smoliak, the head coach of the senior girls basketball team, said they have a young team this year with only six returnees from last year, none of them being in Grade 12.
“Our biggest focus for the McLeod Series is keeping a close game and competing with Weyburn,” said Smoliak.
She believes it will take tenacious defence and strong play along the boards to win.
The senior girls’ Elecs have not had a chance to play Weyburn as of yet this season.
Smoliak said that with half of the team playing senior basketball for the first time, including two Grade 9s, she’s not sure if they fully grasp the hype about the McLeod Series, but they soon will.
“They are excited to play in front of the school,” Smoliak said.