The weekend tournament took place at Matthew Halton High School in Pincher Creek over the weekend.
“We ended up winning the consolation side of the tournament,” said head coach Terence Hochstein. “Friday night we were up against Eagle Butte, which is the number two ranked 3A team in the province.”
The Auroras took the loss against the highly-ranked Eagle Butte team, something Hochstein viewed as a valuable learning experience for the team.
“They’ve only been beat once this year. They’re an excellent team. My girls played very hard and battled right to the very end. It’s one of those lopsided losses that in my mind, I don’t consider a loss. They battled right to the end, they did all of the little things right. We just got beat by a superior team, and they eventually went on to win the tournament, hands down. It was a bit of mismatch, but it was a good learning experience for the kids.”
Undaunted by their initial loss, the Auroras secured a victory in the consolation final.
“We just had one game Saturday, and we ended up playing Coaldale Christian in the consolation final. We won that quite handily, by about 20,” said Hochstein.
The team is gearing up for zone play, which will commence March 10-15.
“The girls are coming along very well. They’re constantly improving,” said Hochstein. “They play very well as a team, they work hard. It’s been a frustrating year for some of them. You host provincials last year, and then you start rebuilding again. It’s a learning process for the kids again, the ones that are remaining. It’s been a good year. We’ve played about .500 ball, that’s where I expected us to be, and that’s where we’re at.”
Hochstein noted the team needs to focus on their strengths to find success in future.
“Just play their game. If they play their game, they’ll have success, if they try to play the opposition’s game, that doesn’t always work out well. Their last home game, league game is this Wednesday.”
The Auroras play host Milk River tonight at St. Mary’s School at 6 p.m. League playoffs begin March 4, which for the girls will be hosted at Erle Rivers High School in Milk River.