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RDPC boys start slow, finish strong in loss

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Citizen photo by Ian Graham

This three-pointer by Glenn Pronteau brought R.D. Parker Collegiate within five points of top-seeded Westgate, who at one point had led by 30, in the opening round at the AAA high school basketball provincials in Thompson on March 15. Westgate won 86-77.

When the first provincial tournament game for the R.D. Parker Collegiate senior boys basketball team tipped off just after 1 p.m. on March 15, spectators might be forgiven for thinking they were still out to lunch, as the number one-ranked Westgate Mennonite Collegiate Wings scored eight points before the eighth-seeded Trojans got on the scoreboard.

By the time Matt Gillis got the Trojans' second basket, Westgate already had 23 points and finished the first quarter leading 29-6. By halftime, it was 46-19 and at one point Westgate had led by 30.

The Trojans could have packed it in and conserved energy for their first consolation round game, but give them credit. They battled right to the end, making the score 82-77 with back to back three-pointers from Tevin Wong and Glenn Pronteau in the last 30 seconds before two intentional foul calls gave their opponent possession and free throws and Westgate sank them all, winning 86-77.

The Trojans outscored their opponent 35-22 in the final quarter and were led overall by Gillis, RDPC's player of the game with 18 points, and Wong, who overcame some early bad shooting luck to sink some clutch baskets as time wound down and finish with 19 points.

Ben Miller led Westgate with 33 points, while Brendan Dyck, Westgate's player of the game, had 26.

The loss ends RDPC's chances of challenging for a provincial title, but a pair of consolation wins could see them finish fifth. Their next opponent, on Friday at 11 a.m., is Linden Christian, who lost 97-92 to Dauphin in overtime.

The other boys' games saw third-seeded St. James knock off sixth-seeded Lorette 81-65 and second seed Nelson McIntyre defeat Hapnot Collegiate Institute of Flin Flon, the seventh seed, 86-74.

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