First-year head coach Fayyaz Tejani wasn’t kidding when he said his team needed a more complete effort in its quarter-final game at the inaugural South Fraser 3A Boys Basketball Championships.
A day after hanging on just to advance to the eight-team tournament, the Richmond Colts stepped up big time to upset Sur-Del League champion North Delta Huskies 76-58 on Tuesday night at Steveston-London Secondary.
The result capped a terrific day for city teams — sweeping all four quarter-final tilts.
Richmond champion McMath opened the schedule by pulling away in the second half for a 76-53 win over Princess Margaret. Third place finisher MacNeill Ravens then delivered a big 68-57 win over Sur-Del runner-up Guildford Park. The host Sharks also took care of business with a 91-80 win over Elgin Park.
It sets-up Wednesday’s semi-final games which are exactly the same as the city final four played two weeks earlier.
McMath will take on McNeill at 5:45 p.m. and the Sharks will face the Colts at 7:30 p.m. With the top three finishers advancing to next week’s BC 3A Championships at the Langley Events Centre, Richmond teams have already secured two of the berths.
The other spot will be determined in the South Fraser playoffs’ third place game which will be played on Friday at 5:45 p.m. The guaranteed all-Richmond final will follow at 7:30 p.m.
The double knockout tournament means the Sur-Del teams still can fight their way back into contention via consolation play that includes two games against the semi-final losers on Thursday.
After finishing fourth in the Richmond playoffs, the Colts needed to defeat the Delta Pacers on Monday in a play-in game. After opening up a 30-9 first quarter lead, Richmond High saw its intensity slip in the second half, along with the big lead. The Colts ended up prevailing 84-77.
It was a much different story against the Huskies who have been lingering in the provincial rankings for the past couple of months.
The Colts erased a 19-15 deficit with a huge second quarter to open up a 41-24 halftime lead. The Huskies would get no closer than 13 points the rest of the way.
First team city all-star Arminas Ilciukas was superb. He scored 19 points and his ball distribution resulted in many easy looks for his teammates. Laza Stanojevic also had 19 while Jonathan Hu chipped in with 15.
It was a balanced attack that led MacNeill past Guildford with five players scoring eight points or more.
At the buzzer…
In Surrey, the McNair Marlins and Hugh Boyd Trojans are off the semi-finals at the South Fraser 2A Championships.
The Marlins defeated Pacific Academy 84-74 and will face host Surrey Christian today. The Trojans got past Burnsview 86-49 and will face Southridge in the other semi-final match-up.
Three BC berths are up for grabs.