‘I know we have the heart to win’: ADSS boys place third in Totem 68 | Ha-Shilth-Sa Newspaper

‘I know we have the heart to win’: ADSS boys place third in Totem 68

Port Alberni, BC

The whole gymnasium of Alberni District Secondary School (ADSS) was filled shoulder to shoulder erupting in cheer as ADSS Sr Boys Basketball team fought for third place in Totem 68. Both teams played as though every second counted, battling to the very last, but ADSS stole the win 76-71 against Ballenas.

“Our focus has been on point this week, I can see by how everyone's more focused because it's such a big event that's happening,” said Thomas Morris, an Ahousaht and Tse’khene player on the team, before going into his final game of the tournament. “Our whole team wants to win, and they've just been super excited for this opportunity.”

“I know we have the heart to win,” said Morris before stepping on the court. 

On Thursday night, Jan. 11 the ADSS senior boys played in their first game against Edward Milne, losing 71-64.

“We lost the first game but we still brought a lot of energy and played with some heart,” said Brooklyn Doiron, a Tseshaht and Ahousaht player on the team.

Going into Thursday's game the team had stress, anxiety and jitters, shared their coach, Steve Sperger. 

“Edward Milne had a big player that we just didn't match up very well against,” Sperger added. “They were able to play more their style of play in that second game.”

ADSS won its second game of the tournament 70-53, which was against Reynolds.

“They were a pretty quick team, but we were pretty quick as well,” added Doiron. “[It was] pretty evenly matched and we came out with the win.”

Morris shared that winning the final match would be a team effort.

“We have to have everyone willing to win,” he said. “We have to pick up our teammates when they're down, keep our heads up, and just play hard.”

But when ADSS Sr Boys Basketball plays a game, they support one another.

“When a player hits the floor, there's three guys jumping off the bench or guys… on the floor helping them get up,” said Sperger. “They’re supporting each other when someone misses a shot to keep shooting, keep going after it [and] guys are speaking up to each other, giving direction, trying to help each other out, so they know where they’re on the court.”

Sperger added that the team is taking his feedback positively, utilizing his instruction on the court. 

“Everyone’s playing hard, [and] they’re doing their best,” said Sperger. “When you have a crowd behind you, like they do at Totem, it’s pretty tough not to give it your best.”

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