By Karlene Skretting
Westwind Weekly News
The Raymond Comets came up short in the South Zone 4A high school girls basketball championship game against the Medicine Hat Kwahommies Saturday night at the Interior Savings Centre in Lethbridge. The Comets squad, who all come in under six feet, did not stack up to the six-foot-three opposition and lost 59-49.
Add the painfully slow start to the mix, and things were not looking good for Raymond from the very beginning.
“We got down 18 to 0 in the first quarter and finished with a half court shot at the buzzer ending the first quarter or else we would have been shut out all the way,” said Comets head coach Jentry Salmon.
Despite some adjustments and winning the second, third and fourth quarters, the Comets dug themselves in too big of a hole to bounce back. Haylee Ralph led the Comets comeback effort with 17 points followed by Teyah Weir’s 12.
The loss gave the Comets a silver medal and a spot in Provincials. To get to the finals Raymond beat LCI 62-46 in their semifinal matchup.
The Comets, Kwahommies and Cardston Cougars- this year’s bronze medallists – are all off to Edmonton to represent the South Zone in provincials Thursday to Saturday.
For the 12th seeded Comets to be successful, they will have to find a way to cope with taller opposition and compensate with speed, accuracy and smart game play.
“We are in the exact same spot that we were last year, we lost in the Zone final and we have a chance to go and compete for a provincial banner and that is all we are thinking about.”
The Comets are heading to Jasper Place High School as the defending 4A champions. This will mark their third consecutive provincial run. Seniors Hayley Ralph and Nevada Bartsoff already have two years of provincial experience under their belts.
Salmon said some of the girls are feeling the pressure even though they are going in at a lower seed this year.
Raymond will open up the tournament Thursday morning against the number fifth seeded Western Canada from Calgary.
“On paper we have a pretty good draw, we just have to take care of business the first few games,” said an optimistic Salmon.
The 4A high school girls provincial basketball championship game will take place at 6 p.m. Saturday.