This year at John Paull II Collegiate, the Crusaders have decided to roster not four, but five basketball teams, due to high demand.
So many players showed up at junior boys tryouts that the coaches decided to go with two junior boys teams, in addition to the junior girls, senior girls, and senior boys.
All five teams began to find their groove before the Christmas break and are now hoping for a deep run to finish off the season.
The senior boys started their season with a 7-3 record.
Right before the break, they hosted their home tournament and came away with a bronze medal, after defeating Swift Current 72-60. That win came after a narrow 67-62 loss in the semifinal to Weyburn.
The senior boys also won the consolation side at tournaments at Prince Albert Carlton and Weyburn.
Having only graduated one player from last season, the senior girls are looking to make some noise at HOOPLA in March.
They haven't played as many games as the senior boys, but carry a solid 4-3 record into 2018.
The senior girls Crusaders started the season with a silver medal at their home tournament and then travelled to Regina for a tournament at Balfour Collegiate, where they went 2-2.
In addition to all the returners, the roster also has a solid number of Grade 10 students this year.
The junior girls started their year with the best record of any JP II team, at 8-1.
They flew out of the gate with tournament wins in Lloydminster and Osler before heading into the Junior Viking Invitational right before the break with an undefeated record.
There, they made it to the final and played their cross-town rival, the NBCHS Vikings. The Vikings edged out the Crusaders for the gold medal, winning by a single bucket. The game was a tight defensive match, with the score being 29-27.
Junior Boys (A)
The Jr. A boys competed in two tournament so far this season and have an overall record of 4-2.
They won a silver medal in Lloydminster and then won the consolation side of the Viking tournament right before the Christmas break.
The team has a good mixture of Grade 8 and Grade 9 players.
Junior Boys (B)
The second junior boys team is not as competitive but did pick up their win right before the break.
They competed in tournaments at Biggar and Onion Lake so far.
With submitted files from Bruce Yockey.
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