Carihi Tyees.

Carihi girls punching above their weight

The AA squad playing against AAA opponents are undefeated in league play

The Carihi girls basketball team should be in over their head.

But the AA squad playing against AAA oponents are undefeated in league play so far this season and have done well in tournament action.

“We started off the year as a AAA team as they went by numbers last year,” coach Dana Dunsmore said, “and realized in the beginning of December that we actually were a AA team. So, the AAA league schedule was already out and we didn’t want to disrupt things, so decided to continue playing AAA teams.”

No problem, though. The team is undefeated in the AAA North Island league. They will be competing in the AA North Island championships, however, and potentially the AA Islands.

The team’s first tournament of the season was at Vanier where they beat Alberni District Secondary School 64-30. They had not beat Alberni the previous year, so the girls gained a lot of confidence after this win, Dunsmore said.

“In the semi-finals we lost to Wellington Secondary School 46-52. Wellington shot lights out from behind the 3 point line to beat us,” she said.

They then beat Belmont Secondary School 45-29 and ended up getting third place.

They then beat Alberni and Cowichan in their AAA league games the next week, 55-39 and 55-21.

Their second tournament was at Wellington where they beat Dover Bay 58-23 to start the tournament, then beat DW Poppy (Vancouver) 52-25 to advance to the finals. They again played Wellington and fell short losing 42-47.

“The girls played a lot better this time against Wellington, but fell apart on defense and had key turnovers in the last five minutes,” Dunsmore said. “We were up on them the entire game until the end. So, the girls got second place.”

The Tyees then had three key victories in league play against Dover Bay 58-24, G.P. Vanier 57-40 and Nanaimo District Secondary School 59-34.

Their most recent tournament was at Isfeld where the girls again came in second. The girls started off the tournament beating Credo (from Vancouver) 72-48. They then went on to beat Shawnigan 52-26 in the semi-finals.

“We went into the finals against the host team Isfeld on quite a high, as the girls had played great since the loss to Wellington in the final of their tournament,” Dunsmore said. “We knew Isfeld had a superstar and keyed our defense to try to stop her. In the end, she scored 48 points, and we lost 59-75.

“This tournament was a good one for us, as all but two teams were AA schools. Ballenas, Wellington and Isfeld are all at the top of the AA League so far this season, and they were all at this tournament.”

The Carihi Tyees currently hold a solid 11-3 record.

“We have learned a lot from our losses and have steadily improved throughout the season,” Dunsmore said. “I’m hoping this loss gives them more motivation to work harder in practice and learn how to stop a team who has one key standout player.

The Tyees are trying to peak for the North Islands in just over a week.