AFTER sitting out the second quarter with foul trouble, Mindy Minhas stepped up his game in the second half and brought home the cup for Sir Winston Churchill Bulldogs.
For the Bulldogs, this was their first ever trip to the main dance, and they played with determination to hold on long enough on their way to a 67-64 win over Surrey’s Holy Cross Crusaders in the first ever B.C. 4A senior boys basketball championship final, staged at the Langley Events Centre Sunday night.
MVP Mindy Minhas, finished the game by scoring 23 of his game-high 30 points in the second half.
Holy Cross’s Taylor Browne brought his team to within 65-61 with a layup with 1:34 remaining, but it was Minhas’ 3-point shot from way past the 3-point line, with two seconds left on the shot clock, that gave Churchill the lead at 65-61.
Seconds later, Minhas made a steal and drove coast-to-coast, getting fouled on the way and he sank one of the two free throws in the process. The score now was 66-61. With 32.7 seconds left, Holy Cross’s Brandon Pereira sunk a 3-pointer to make it 66-64. But that was not enough.
The score would not have been as close as it was if the Bulldogs had not missed 20 of 31 free throws.
The Bulldogs’ trip to the final game came via wins over defending B.C. champion Walnut Grove, No. 1-ranked Tamanawis, and then finally, Holy Cross team that was designed to win.
In the 3rd place game, Surrey’s Tamanawis Wildcats beat Sardis 70-56 with 28 points from Sukhjot Bains. In the fifth-sixth game, the Burnaby South Rebels topped Coquitlam’s Gleneagle Talons 60-57.
MEANWHILE, the Province newspaper reported that it sent out a total of 17 independent and confidential ballots to coaches at the Single, Double, Triple and Quad A tiers in different geographic regions, as well as the CCAA college ranks, requesting them to rank their top 15 Grade 12 players based on their seasons of play and 12 coaches responded.
Number 1 spot went to Sukhjot Bains (Surrey-Tamanawis, 4A) (171 points) and the Number 3 spot went to Mindy Minhas (Vancouver-Sir Winston Churchill, 4A) (142).
Other South Asians who received votes were: Sukhman Sandhu (Surrey-Tamanawis, 4A) (10), Antonio Jhutty (Richmond-R.C. Palmer, 2A) (9), Parm Bains (Surrey-Tamanawis, 4A) (6), and Sirban Gill (Abbotsford, 3A) (3).
– The VOICE report
(All photos by Harman Combow)