Aidan Gratton puts up this running jump shot during action in the second quarter Feb. 22 in St. Augustine’s 79-49 victory over Caroline in the Kings home tournament Feb. 22. Photo by Jordie Dwyer

Ponoka Kings fall just short of crowning victory in home tournament

Ponoka Catholic school squad now getting ready for charge to provincials

It’s never a happy time when one misses out on winning their home tournament, but for the St. Augustine Kings senior boys basketball team it isn’t a bad thing either.

The Kings performed a huge comeback in the final Feb. 23 versus Wainwright, though fell just short losing 75-71.

“We put ourselves in a big hole and all of the shots we put up were good ones, it was just many of them simply didn’t fall for us,” said Kings head coach Adam Bowie.

“They had one big guy and we tried everything on him, but he still managed to get his points…they were hitting just everything.”

Bowie noted the second quarter was where his club struggled, with Wainwright up 42-30 at the half.

“We were missing lay-ups, the guys were trying three-pointers and they weren’t going in,” he stated.

“We managed to outscore them in the fourth quarter, but it just wasn’t enough. Sometimes you have to live with what you can control.”

However, despite the loss, Bowie feels that game provides the team with an opportunity next month.

“Wainwright will be at our zone tournament and though we may not face them, this game gives me a good gauge as to where we will sit heading in,” he explained.

Wainwright was set to play Camrose’s Our Lady of Mount Pleasant — who are the third ranked team in 2A boys basketball — this week and that will show Bowie where the Kings stand.

The Kings opened up the tournament Feb. 22 with a 79-49 win over Caroline, a contest that gave Bowie a chance to get his full roster some much needed playing time. That was followed up with hard-fought 88-80 victory over Devon earlier in the day Feb. 23.

“Against Devon, it was a hard battle and we rained three-pointers all game. And sometimes, you live and die by the three, which the guys tried in the final and it just didn’t work out,” he added.

And, while Bowie isn’t keen on individual statistics in a team game, one particular performance in the Devon game bears pointing out.

Kyle Roque put 35 points on the board, all but six of those coming from beyond the arc. Roque saw nine of his 14 three-point attempts hit nothing but net — a spectacular shooting percentage of 64 — a feat that Bowie is proud of.

The Kings are scheduled to complete their regular season tonight (Feb. 27) at home against Ermineskin and then will have more than a week off to prepare for the regional zone playoff tournament on March 8 and 9.

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Ram Wijarathna (left) goes high in the air after a rebound while St. Augustine Kings teammate Davin Vreugdenhil battles on the floor with two Caroline players for the loose ball in what would wind up as a 79-49 win for the Kings Feb. 22. Photo by Jordie Dwyer

St. Augustine Kings head coach Adam Bowie goes over some strategy between the first and second quarter of the Feb. 22 game versus Caroline. Photo by Jordie Dwyer

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