Gritty Hawks beat Brookswood for Valley title

Heading into the Fraser Valley AAA basketball tournament, everyone knew the W.J. Mouat Hawks senior girls squad had a ton of talent.

Jennah Bryce of the Mouat Hawks hauls down a rebound during the Fraser Valley AAA title game vs. Brookswood.

Jennah Bryce of the Mouat Hawks hauls down a rebound during the Fraser Valley AAA title game vs. Brookswood.

Heading into the Fraser Valley AAA basketball tournament, everyone knew the W.J. Mouat Hawks senior girls squad had a ton of talent. If Saturday’s 78-63 victory over the Brookswood Bobcats in the Valley title game is any indication, B.C.’s top-ranked team also has plenty of mental fortitude. With 4:58 remaining in the fourth quarter and Mouat leading 65-58, Hawks standout forward Katie Brink picked up her fifth and disqualifying foul. No matter – her team responded with an impressive 8-0 run to seal the win.”When Katie fouled out, we all huddled up and said, ‘We need to finish this,'” said Kayli Sartori, who earned tournament MVP honours after scoring a game-high 24 points in the final. “It just got us more pumped.”The victory marked the Hawks’ first Valley title since 1995, and more than likely gives them the top seed at AAA provincials, which runs March 9-12 at North Vancouver’s Capilano University.In addition to Sartori’s MVP award, Brink was named a first team all-star, while Ashleyn Sarowa was a second-teamer. KNIGHTS DOMINATEThe Abbotsford Christian Knights senior girls might have been the most dominant team at any tier during the Fraser Valley playoffs. They won the Single A title, beating Unity Christian 99-45 in the final.”We had a very specific plan about how we were going to handle certain situations, and they executed to the nines,” Knights coach Mark Veerman said. “I love where we are right now (as a team). Every coach has things they want to work on, but I love that our level of execution was so high this weekend.”Stephanie Ridder earned tournament MVP honours, while Jenna Vos and Vivian Veerman were first team all-stars.The Knights are the defending provincial champs, and they’re ranked No. 2 in B.C. heading into Single A provincials, March 9-12 in Sparwood. BEST OF THE RESTOther local Fraser Valley basketball medallists, as of Monday’s press deadline, included the Mouat junior boys (silver), the MEI senior girls (bronze in AA), and the Mouat Grade 9 boys (bronze). The following is an overview of local results from the weekend.AAA BOYS: Abbotsford teams went 4-1 during Friday’s do-or-die opening round. The Yale Lions defeated Charles Best; W.J. Mouat beat Port Moody 79-45; the MEI Eagles outscored South Delta 96-89; and Abby Collegiate beat Delta 86-76. The Robert Bateman Timberwolves saw their season come to an end with a loss to Enver Creek. The local teams’ schedule for Monday’s round of 16 is as follows: • Yale vs. Enver Creek (6:15 p.m. at Terry Fox Secondary)• Mouat vs. Gleneagle (6:15 p.m. at Pitt Meadows)• MEI vs. Pitt Meadows (8 p.m. at Pitt Meadows)• Abby Collegiate vs. Terry Fox (8 p.m. at Terry Fox)AAA GIRLS: In addition to Mouat’s gold medal, the Yale Lions also turned in a solid performance. The 10th-seeded Lions finished eighth in the Valley – just one spot shy of a spot in the wild card round for a provincial berth. They dropped a 56-44 decision to Terry Fox in the seventh-eighth placing game.AA GIRLS: The MEI Eagles won a pair of thrilling overtime games against Pitt Meadows and Mission en route to the bronze medal game, where they edged G.W. Graham 50-48. The Eagles play a wild card game against Kalamalka of Vernon on Monday at 4 p.m. for a provincial berth.Harvina Kaler was named a Valley first team all-star after scoring a team-high 21 points against G.W. Graham, and Olivia Loewen was a second-teamer.AA BOYS: The Abby Christian Knights were the top local finisher, going 2-2 with wins over R.E. Mountain and D.W. Poppy. They were ultimately eliminated in the consolation quarter-finals, losing 76-68 to Pacific Academy.SINGLE A BOYS: The host St. John Brebeuf Bears battled their way to the bronze medal game, where they dropped a 58-23 decision to Unity Christian of Chilliwack.JUNIOR BOYS: The Mouat Hawks finished second in the Valley after dropping a hard-fought 54-51 decision to White Rock Christian Academy in the title game. Corey Hauck and Dan Pawliuk were named tournament all-stars after scoring 14 and 10 points, respectively, in the final.JUNIOR GIRLS: Mouat defeated crosstown rival Yale 56-47 on Saturday morning to earn a spot in the bronze medal game, where they fell to Holy Cross.GRADE 9 BOYS: Mouat beat Vedder Middle of Chilliwack 51-39 to claim the bronze medal. GRADE 8 GIRLS: Abbotsford teams occupy three of the four spots in the medal games at the Fraser Valleys, which run Monday evening at Walnut Grove. The Colleen and Gordie Howe Bulldogs square off against Abby Traditional in the gold medal game, while MEI faces Walnut Grove for bronze.GRADE 8 BOYS: The Howe Bulldogs are the top local finisher. They play Kwantlen Park in the fifth-sixth placing game on Monday evening at G.W. Graham in Chilliwack.