The U17 Cranbrook 3G Club basketball team returned home with gold medals in tow following their championship victory at a tournament in Calgary over the weekend.
The girls edged out a 57-52 victory against the Southern Alberta Heat, after winning their previous two games that booked an appearance in the final.
“This squad smothered our girls with in-your-face pressure,” said coach Joe Tank, “and were able to put our girls down 14 points at the half mark.”
However, the 3G club made some important adjustments on their defensive and offensive aspects of their game and went out to have a dominating performance in the third quarter.
“Being able to turn around and make these kind of half time adjustments showed just how basketball-smart these girls are,” said coach Greg Colburn.
Their work in the third-quarter put the 3G girls ahead by 14 points over the Heat and gave them the momentum needed to seal up the win and the championship in the final 15 minutes of the game.
The road to the title game wasn’t easy, as the Cranbrook-based club had to get through two tough Albertan teams.
In the opening match, the 3G club faced the Edmonton Grads in a hard fought game, but ended up with a 10-point cushion for a 57-47 win.
The girls carried that success into their following matchup against the Calgary Summit, a squad that had some size with four girls that stood over six feet tall. However, the 3G girls weren’t fazed, and used their speed and showed their resilience by winning by a wide margin of 57-42.
Colburn and Tank are especially proud of the way their team performed in light of the fact that while they competed in the U17 age category, many are still U16 or even U15.