The Kelly Road Tournament for the AA boys basketball league had to be cancelled January 13, 14 because that school’s team had folded. Instead, the Nechako Valley Vikings travelled to Prince George Secondary (PGSS) for two exhibition games on Saturday January 13 and DP Todd Secondary for game on Monday. A parent of one of the players graciously gave Omineca Express a rundown of those events, saying for the most part the games were real nail biters.
Bryan Lytle said the Vikings got into a lot of foul trouble in the first game. In addition, they only had eight players able to attend and PGSS hit a three point shot to tie the game right as the horn went, putting the game into overtime.
After that, Lytle said things kept on a path of sheer excitement.
“With a minute left in the first overtime, we were up by two but we had a player foul out so we only had four players on the floor,” Lytle explained, “then the same (PGSS) player who tied it up in regulation time tied it up again.” Then T.J. Van Damme who only played in the last minute of the first overtime and then in the second overtime made some plays crucial to the Viking effort.
“(Van Damme) played fantastic,” noted Lytle, “he got rebounds and then he scored a go-ahead basket in the overtime.” After PGSS got a three-point lead with about 30 seconds left on the clock, Lytle observed, PGSS was getting frustrated because they coudn’t find an open guy thanks to Viking players covering them so well. NVSS offense play was also keeping PGSS on their toes.
“(Viking) Scot Wallace got a three-point shot to tie it for us,” Lytle marvelled,”then with .5 seconds left, RileyWallace was fouled, and he shot a free throw to win the game with no time left.” Vikings won 91-90 in that game.
They also played DP Todd and beat them by eight points though it wasn’t near as eventful as the game before it, Lytle said, adding the Vikings put forth a great team effort.
On Monday’s exhibition game against DP Todd, Riley Wallace and Kaston McKee were the leading scorers but the DP Todd defence focused on them in the last half, to try and hinder the key players. That left Viking, Torrin Lytle to score ten points in overtime to lead the team to the win in that game. Vikings are off to the Coal Bowl in Nova Scotia on January 27.