The Pictou County Lightning girls mini A basketball team pose with their silver medals from provincials held March 28-30 in the Annapolis Valley. Back row from left: head coach Andy MacKay, Sarah Allard, Madelyn MacMillan, Tanner Himmelman, Reagan MacDonald, Jaden MacEachern, Hannah Fahie, and assistant coach Mark Arbuckle. Front row from left: Abbey O'Neil, Isabella MacKay, Emily Arbuckle, Kaitlyn Jota and Christina Snyder. Missing from photo: Kylee Atkins.
The newly formed Pictou County Lightning Minor Basketball Club decided to hold a tryout for mini girls basketball in early February this year, hoping to represent the region in the Basketball Nova Scotia provincials.
With over 50 kids that went to tryouts, the club limited the age to girls in Grades 5 and 6 only. From there two teams of 12 kids were chosen.
The first team was coached by Andrew Mackay and Mark Arbuckle, while the other was coached by Brian MacLeod and Todd Fast. Both teams quickly came together, and got organized to have a few practices and the necessary two seeding games.
One team ended up seeded in D5, and the other in D6. The Lightning club was delighted with the results of the two teams who both managed to win silver medals, respectively losing close championship games.
The D5 Provincial tournament was held at Avonview High in Windsor, N.S.
The Lightning mini girls kicked off the tournament with 33-27 win over Greenwood. Hannah Fahie was chosen player of the game and had eight points.
In their second game they won a lopsided 48-13 game against the Middleton Martyrs. The Lightning player of the game was Reagan MacDonald, who dominated the game with 14 points and 14 rebounds.
Lightning struck again in the Saturday matinee game as they defeated the Bedford Eagles 58-12. Isabella Mackay had a masterful performance of passing and shooting to be selected as the player of the game.
Finishing 3-0 in the preliminary round gave Pictou County the top spot in their pool and sent them to the semifinal game against the other pools second place team, the West End Steelers from Halifax. Once again the girls proved too much for their opponents and cruised to a 48-14 victory. Maddie MacMillan, who had her ‘A’ game going in the semifinal, was named player of the game.
For the provincial final the Lightning faced Greenwood for the second time in the tournament.
This time Greenwood came out on top, winning 31-25.
Jaden MacEachern was named player of the game for her high-energy eight-point performance.
The coaches were extremely proud of the girl’s game play considering they only had a handful of practices and games to develop into a team.