It was closer than it should've been but the Cedars Christian Eagles survived some inconsistent shooting in their quarterfinal game against the Kelowna Christian Knights to earn a berth in the 2013 senior girls high school A provincial semifinal.
Cedars hung on for a 69-62 win over the Knights on Thursday and will face the Princeton Rebels in the semifinal tonight, 7 p.m., at the Northern Sport Centre.
Eagles coach Al MacDonald said his top-ranked team was pressed by the Knights but didn't break.
"In the end we just kept our composure and did the things we needed to do down the stretch," said MacDonald.
The Eagles jumped out to a 21-4 advantage over the Knights, going on a 17-point run in the first quarter that may have been more had the Cedars shooters been more accurate in finding the hoop. But the Knights took advantage of a injury that kept the Eagles Hannah Pudlas off the court for most of the second quarter, closing the gap to 30-28 at the half.
Cedars first-year post Kristin Anton said it was a bit nerve-wracking when the Knights pulled within a basket.
"It kind of got a little scary," said the 17-year-old. "We just kind of lost our adrenaline and we were all slowing down a bit."
The Eagles didn't appear panicked on the bench to start the third quarter as there was smiles and laughter among the players. Pudlas returned to the court in the second half, dropping nine points to give her 17 in the game including the game's only two three-pointers.
Anton had a strong game under the bucket, contributing 12 points to the win while Kayla Gordon had 13 points.
Knights coach Brian Krueger said he knew his team had to contain Gordon and Pudlas if his eighth-ranked squad wanted to pull off the upset.
"We play a real high intensity pressing game and we thought we had a chance," said Krueger. "We've played right to the wire with the No. 1, 2, 3 and 4 seeds all year in our own zone, so we know we can play with the best."
In other action Thursday, Princeton beat the Langley Christian Lightning 63-49 to earn their berth in the semifinal against the Eagles, while the Pacific Christian Pacers of Vancouver Island knocked off the Mulgrave Titans, of the Lower Mainland, 74-52 and will face Kelowna's Immaculata Mustangs in the other semifinal (today, 5 p.m.). The Mustangs beat the Fernie Falcons 110-45.
On the consolation side, it was Rossland over Duncan Christian 76-47, Credo Christian beating Fraser Lake 62-37 and Unity knocking off Fort St. James 65-39.
Meanwhile, the Cedars boys fell 69-38 to St. Ann of Kamloops at the single-A boys provincial championship in Abbotsford on Thursday. Cedars plays Mount Sentinel today at 8 a.m.
In triple-A girls basketball action, the PGSS Polars pulled off the biggest upset of the provincial tournament so far Thursday when they beat the eighth-seed MEI Eagles 80-55.
Mavia Nijjer led the Polars to the win with 25 points while Issy Bourque tallied 16. The Polars, ranked 15th at the provincial tournament, outscored MEI 32-13 in the second quarter.
In their opening game Wednesday at the Langley Events Centre the Polars fell 74-51 to Maple Ridge, the second-ranked team.
Polars coach Ray Bourque said it's the first time since he began coaching the senior girls about eight years ago a PGSS team has won a second round game at the provincial tournament.
He credited the Polars shooting efficiency for the win as they made 44 per cent of their shots and have played some good defence against teams that have at least two "really big girls."
The Polars face the Fleetwood Dragons in their third game today at 10 a.m
Condors results mixed
The Duchess Park Condors saw their senior girls team fall 72-37 to the top ranked Holy Cross in AA girls action Thursday, while the boys team rebounded from an opening day loss with a 65-55 win over Sahali in Kamloops. The DPSS boys will face Southern Okanagan today at 12:30 p.m. The Condors girls will play at 10:45 a.m.
In junior A boys action, the D.P. Todd Trojans, ranked 11th in the provincial championship, beat the sixth ranked Cowichan Thunderbirds 50-48.