Basketball is very popular in Merritt this year and last weekend the Grade 8 girls and boys hosted the ‘Eagles Perch Invitational’. The boys tournament consisted of 12 teams and the girls six teams.

The Merritt Grade 8 girls team made Merritt Secondary School proud with winning second place in the tournament. The Grade 8s do not have much experience playing basketball as the rules for elementary school are adjusted for younger kids. This is a whole new challenge for them and to come second with a small team is a huge success. 

“All season we have battled with roster shortages, but they refuse to give up. They are learning, growing, and developing confidence” said Grade 8 girls coach Cass Dekker. 

The Merritt girls played a total of three games, winning two and losing one. The girls beat Brock Secondary 8-27 as the opening game on Friday. 

MSS fought extremely hard against Barriere for their second game Friday winning 33-32. Their final game on Saturday was the championship game. The girls fell short to South Kamloops 38-7. 

The team played very well this weekend, “I am so proud of these young ladies. We were missing an impactful member of our team this weekend, but they dug deep and earned their way to the championship game” said coach Dekker. 

While the girls were playing there were also boys games. The boys half of the tournament consisted of 12 teams, two of them being Merritt teams. Boys basketball in Merritt has more interest than girls, so the Grade 8 boys had to split into two teams. Team number one finished tenth in the tournament winning one of three games. Team one had a huge win against Revelstoke winning 68-14. 

Merritt team number two took one out of three games beating Revelstoke on Saturday 28 to 24 finishing in 11th place.

All the teams had an amazing weekend and represented the school well. “I hope young athletes watching this weekend were inspired to play this beautiful sport” said Dekker.