Rainmakers win big on the road

The Charles Hays junior boys basketball Rainmakers picked up two big wins in a Smithers tourney earlier in December.

The Charles Hays junior boys basketball Rainmakers picked up two big wins in a Smithers tourney earlier in December, but their travel schedule hindered the boys’ abilities a little more than coach Kevin Sawka would have liked.

“Very ragged, sloppy game,” Sawka said of the team’s second game of the day on Saturday, Dec. 13 versus Caledonia – a 35-31 win for the Rupertites.

“Our guys were tired after leaving Prince Rupert at 5:30 a.m. to play in the 11 a.m. game [against Smithers] and then wait all afternoon to play at 4 p.m. Many had been up for nearly 12 hours by that point,” said the coach after the tournament.

Though fatigue caused the Rainmakers to depart from their “A” game, late heroics by Quinn Leighton, Ben Rabel and Cody Schaeffer secured the victory for the so far 4-0 junior ‘Makers. Leighton notched a long-distance three-pointer, Rabel scored from the free-throw line and Schaeffer completed an “acrobatic hoop plus-one conversion after struggling throughout the game”, mentioned Sawka.

In their much more dominant game at 11 a.m., the Rainmakers downed Smithers 67-32. Leighton finished the game with 16 points and 10 rebounds.

“All 15 players contributed in the game after strong performances from the starting five and spirited play from the supporting cast,” said the coach.

Next up for the junior ‘Makers are some practice and training sessions over the holiday break in preparation for the Duchess Park Condor Classic from Jan. 9 – 10 in Prince George.