By Garrett Simmons
For the Times
The W.R. Myers Rebels senior boys basketball team will play for third place in the Deep South Basketball League.
Taber’s championship dreams were dashed last Wednesday, as the Rebels fell 94-79 to Coaldale’s Kate Andrews in the league semifinal.
Colby Torrie led Myers with 24 points, while Kade Hansen added 15. Tyson Harker added 12 and Elias Cooper had 10 points in the loss.
Rebels coach Dale Nielsen said his team played hard throughout, but ran into a battle-tested opponent.
“Kate Andrews is ranked No. 2 in the ASAA and they deserve it,” he said. “We played well, started fast and hung with them for most of the game. We even moved ahead by one point in the fourth quarter.”
The coach added his team gave it everything it had, all in front of a raucous home crowd.
“Proud of our kids for their energy and really battling and playing their hearts out. However, Kate Andrews is graduating 10 seniors this year and are a very veteran group. Credit to them. They didn’t panic and we got into some foul trouble late. They were able to gain momentum in the end and pull ahead. We hope to play them again in zones.”
It was Senior Night, as Myers honoured Colby Torrie and Logan Porter, who have been Taber’s veteran leaders all season.
“Though we have a youthful and talented group coming up, we will miss their leadership,” said Nielsen.
The loss now sets up a March 1 game against Stirling, where the senior team will battle for third place against another tough opponent.
“Last time we played Stirling, we did not play well at all,” said Nielsen. “To win next week we will have to be more aggressive and get good rebounding and defense from our players across the board. Stirling is very talented and well coached. It will also be a home game for us, so we invite all to come watch some exciting basketball.”
The seniors will hit the floor at 7:30 p.m. and the JVs will kick things off at 6 p.m.
The JV squad heads into the Stirling game on a roll after last week’s 80-74 win over Kate Andrews, led by Benson Leischman’s 32 points. Brandon Johnson and Dane Jensen added 11 points each.
The Rebels senior varsity girls team also heads into the final week of the regular season on a winning streak, as Myers defended home court last Thursday with a 55-44 win over Picture Butte on Senior Night.
Belinda Rios had 12, Jenna Bailey had 11 and Natalee Porter added nine for the Rebels.
The JV teams earned a 59-50 win over Kate Andrews, as Morgan McClenaghan had 15, Jayla Hudson had 14 and Katie Guimond added 10.
Both Rebels girls teams end the regular season on Feb. 28 with road games in Lethbridge against Winston Churchill High School.