CK basketball players hit the road for early-season experience
The Central Kings Rural High School Gators senior boys’ basketball team recently kicked off its 2018-19 season playing in the Bathurst High School Invitational Tournament.
The Gators played their first game vs Ecole Ste Anne High School of Fredericton and came out on the short end of a 95-62 score. Alex Parnell led the Gators in scoring with 17 points, Isaac Moores added eight points and was very strong defensively to earn player of the game honours.
In their second game, the CK boys rebounded - literally and figuratively - to defeat Ecole Secondaire Nepisiquit of Bathurst by a 97-61 score. Parnell earned player of the game honours with his personal best 44-point per- formance. Lance Keddy added 12 points.
The win advanced the Gators to the tournament semi-final against host Bathurst High School. The Gators pulled out early to a six-point lead but a third-quarter defensive lapse saw them trailing by 14 points with three minutes left in the third quarter. The players picked up the defensive play and battled back to be within four (81-77) with a minute left, thanks as well to some clutch shooting by Nathan Parnell in the fourth quarter. However, BHS would hold on for an 87-77 win. Nathan Parnell’s 19-point performance earned him player of the game honours.
As well as the basketball action, the Gators had some educational activities as well, visiting the “Boys in Red “memorial sites, which are dedicated to BHS basketball play- ers who lost their lives in a tragic accident in January 2008.
The tragedy garnered national attention in 2008 when a van carrying the BHS senior boys’ basketball team was struck by a transport truck, killing seven players and the coach’s wife.
“I felt it would be good for the boys to learn about what happened and realize how lucky they are to be playing high school sports. The message I gave them was that when the accident happened, everybody reacted to how those kids died, but every time kids step on the floor to play basketball, they are celebrating how those kids lived,” said CK coach Paul Daley.
The Gators also signed on to play in the Miramichi Hoop Classic tournament featuring Division 1 schools in New Brunswick and PEI early this season.
The Central Kings Rural High School Gators senior boys’ basketball team consists of, front row, from left, Jack Falconer, Kade Freakes, Andrew Pineo, Gabriel Leoni, Tyler Robertson. Back row, Coach Paul Daley, coach Chris Parnell, Alex Parnell, Nolan Ogden, David MacLean, Isaac Moores, Charles Miranda, Ethan MacDougall, Pierson Holmes, Lance Keddy, Nathan Parnell, coach Dwayne Keddy, and coach Dana Pineo. Missing from photo is Landon Harvey.