T-Wolves pull off upset to open Fraser Valley East hoops playoffs

Bateman senior boys basketball coach Virinder Braich wasn't too proud to admit surprise in the wake of his team's 56-46 win over Brookswood.

Bateman Timberwolves senior boys basketball coach Virinder Braich wasn’t too proud to admit a bit of surprise in the wake of his team’s 56-46 win over Brookswood in the opening round of the Fraser Valley East playoffs.

Braich could be forgiven – he was hardly the only one whose eyebrows were raised. The youthful Timberwolves, after all, had gone 0-8 during FV East regular season play, and trailed by 10 at halftime of Wednesday’s elimination game at Walnut Grove Secondary in Langley.

But Bateman put together a terrific second-half performance, spearheaded by Grade 11 forward Riley Davis, and rallied to register a mild upset of the Bobcats, who had gone 2-6 in league play.

“We played some great defence in the second half,” Braich acknowledged. “We’re pretty young – we have a lot of Grade 11s – so we just wanted them to go play hard and do their best. They surprised me.”

The bottom four seeds in the 10-team league played elimination games on Wednesday, with the winners securing a spot in the round of 32 at the Fraser Valley Tournament next week.

In the early game, the Chilliwack Storm ended the Mennonite Educational Institute Eagles’ season, winning 76-61.

Thursday’s schedule is as follows, with all games running at Walnut Grove:

3 p.m. – Walnut Grove vs. Chilliwack

4:45 p.m. – Mouat vs. Abby Collegiate

6:30 p.m. – Sardis vs. Maple Ridge

8:15 p.m. – Yale vs. Bateman

Semifinals run at 6:30 p.m. and 8:15 p.m. Friday, and the final is set for 8:15 p.m. Saturday.